Drink driver caught by police who thought he was lost

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A DRIVER who failed a breath test after getting behind the wheel following a row with his girlfriend has been banned from the road.

John Emery, from Fatfield, Washington, was stopped by police after they were concerned that he had got lost.

But when they spoke to him they smelled alcohol on his breath and he gave a positive roadside test, in Dame Flora Robson Avenue, South Shields,

The 28-year-old was arrested and taken to the town police station but couldn’t blow for long enough on breath test equipment.

He was charged with failing to provide a specimen for analysis and admitted the offence at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court.

Jonathan Moore, prosecuting, said: “At 1.45am officers on duty stopped a white van.

“They could smell intoxicating liquor on his breath.

“He was given a number of chances to provide a specimen of breath and didn’t provide a medical reason.”

Paul Kennedy, defending, said: “The police didn’t stop him because they were suspicious about his driving.

“It was because he seemed to be lost and was driving around aimlessly. He had an argument with his partner and was driving to clear his head.

“It wasn’t a deliberate failure or a deliberate refusal to give a breath specimen.

“He shouldn’t have done it and he wishes he hadn’t. He has shown genuine remorse.”

Emery, of Broadmeadows, was banned from driving for 12 months. He was also ordered to pay a fine of £250 as well as court costs of £85 and a victim surcharge of £25.