Drink driver arrested for crashing into a garden fence in his street after his wife phone police

A drink-drive DJ added a criminal record to his collection after crashing his car while more than twice the limit.

Sunday, 1st December 2019, 5:21 pm
Updated Monday, 2nd December 2019, 10:30 am
The case was heard at South Tyneside Magistrates' Court.
The case was heard at South Tyneside Magistrates' Court.

A court heard Alex Ridley, 42, of Tynedale Crescent, Easington Lane, had been made to sleep in his car overnight by his wife after boozing.

But it was pints in the pub with a pal the next day, on Saturday, October 19, that may have pushed him over the limit, a court was told.

Allowed back into the marital home, he picked up the keys to his 61-plate Renault Scenic and drove off - despite his wife trying to stop him.

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Moments later he crashed into a garden fence in his own street, his wife finding out from a neighbour who called to her: “You’ve going to have to come, you’re going to have to come.”

Magistrates in South Tyneside handed self-employed Ridley, a dad-of-three, a two-year driving ban.

Prosecutor Eve McDonnell told South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court: “His wife had contacted police. She’s stated that the defendant had been at home and had problems with alcohol.

“There appears to be a bit of a set-to regarding him getting into the vehicle.

“She describes him as getting lucky and gaining access to the car and driving off. She decides to call the police.”

Ridley gave a roadside breath test reading of 93 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitress of breath. The legal limit is 35.

Neil Hodgson, defending Ridley, said the disc jockey was suffering the emotional fall out from issues including the death of his mother and financial difficulties.

He told magistrates: “It’s a bit of a mid-life crisis situation. One thing after another has just got onto his shoulders, onto his mind. He hasn’t been able to cope. It’s got more and more on top of him.

“He had been drinking the previous day and was told by his wife to sleep in the car. The next day he’s gone to the pub for a couple of pints.

“If he hadn’t had a couple of pints he probably wouldn’t have been over the limit.

“He stands before you, head bowed, ashamed of what he’s done but there are reasons.”

Ridley, who had pleaded guilty to drink-driving at an earlier hearing, was also handed a 12-month community order.

It includes 20 days rehabilitation work with the Probation Service and a six-month alcohol treatment requirement.

He was also ordered to pay £85 courts costs and a £90 victim surcharge.