Drugged-up man found slumped in car outside Sunderland police station

Southwick Police Station.
Southwick Police Station.

A dad was caught slumped in his car outside a Sunderland police station after taking drugs.

Darren Potts, 28, claimed he was beaten up by an angry mob in ‘eight or nine’ cars, who left him with three broken ribs, prior to his arrest on November 4, Sunderland magistrates heard.

He had gone to seek treatment at hospital before he later returned to his car, which he claims he had parked outside Southwick Police Station for safety.

Tests showed he had 1,370 microgrammes of diazepam in 100ml of blood – more than twice the legal limit of 500.

Prosecutor Alison Howey said two officers spotted Potts’ Nissan Micra, with the engine still running, outside the police station, on Church Bank, at 11.45pm.

“The defendant appeared to be slumped over. One officer opened the driver’s side door and removed the keys from the ignition. This caused him to wake up and he asked ‘What are you doing?’

“He told them he fell asleep while rolling a cigarette and he was there because of the CCTV cameras for safety.”

Potts, who appeared unsteady on his feet, was arrested. A breath test showed he had no alcohol in his system, only the diazepam.

Potts, of Keats Avenue, Southwick, pleaded guilty to being in charge of a vehicle while under the influence of drugs.

Fiona Lamb, defending, said it had been about a week since Potts had taken the drugs.

He was fined £160 and was told to pay £400 costs and £20 victim surcharge. He was also given 10 points on his licence.