Wedding guest high on drink and drugs terrified Sunderland motorists as he tried to walk along A19 to Worcestershire

A wedding guest who was high on drink and drugs left motorists terrified when he tried to walk the 230 miles home along the A19 from Sunderland to Worcestershire.

Thursday, 17th November 2016, 5:00 am
Junction of the A19 with the A690 Durham Road at East Herrington, Sunderland

Martin Berrows, 35, was seen running and walked south in the middle of the northbound carriageway at 8.40am on a Sunday morning.

As drivers tried to avoid hitting him, he lashed out at their vehicles, damaging wing mirrors, Sunderland magistrates heard.

Prosecutor Lesley Burgess said: “These offences occurred on the morning of October 23 on the northbound carriageway of the A19.

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“The first injured party states that she was driving past the A690 junction when she saw the defendant running in the carriageway, kicking at cars as they passed.

“She tried to drive around the defendant when he struck out at her passenger-side wing mirror. It shattered and the trim was cracked.

“The second incident occurred around the same time when another motorit was driving north on the A19 in Sunderland, near the junction with the A183.

“He came upon several slow-moving vehicles and believed an accident had occurred. There was a white Mini alongside him and, in front of it, he saw the defendant in the middle of the carriageway.

“He saw the defendant approach and repeatedly kick the front of the Mini. The defendant is described as being agitated.

“He then approached the injured party’s vehicle and struck the nearside wing mirror.

“He heard the defendant scream out in pain as he did so, and managed to drive off without further incident.

In a victim personal statement, he said: “People could have been seriously injured or killed. He placed other road users, including children in unnecessary danger.

“My children were upset by this behaviour and the incident in general.”

Berrows, of Barnards Close, Malvern, Worcestershire, admitted two counts of criminal damage. He has 21 previous offences on his record, the court was told.

When he was interviewed by police, he said: “I can’t remember a thing. I had drunk so much alcohol and taken so much cocaine.”

Jason Smith, defending, said: “You are dealing with two offences of criminal damage here.

“Notwithstanding the aggravating features, you are dealing with minor criminal damage offences.”

He added: “Mr Berrows had driven up from Worcestershire to attend a family wedding. He has been out for the night and that day has decided to walk home.

“At some point in the night, he believes he has been spiked, because he has no recollection of this whatsoever.

“What appears to be the case is he’s walking back to Worcestershire. Walking south, on the northbound carriageway of the A19.

“It must have been terrifying for the people in the cars.”

Berrows was fined £65, with £85 costs and £85 surcharge and was told to pay compensation of £60.