Nissan apprentice caught drink-driving may have been caught out by diabetes effects, claims solicitor

Heworth Road, Concord, Washington.
Heworth Road, Concord, Washington.
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A Nissan apprentice blamed his diabetes on being over the limit the morning after a drunken bender.

Callum Scott, 18, was caught drink-driving in Washington, following a tip-off to police, Sunderland magistrates heard.

He was recently diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes and is on insulin, having only recently prior to the incident started his medication

Tony Southwick

When officers came across the teenager’s black Ford Fiesta at 8.15am on Saturday, April 1, his eyes were described as ‘glazed’, the court was told.

Laura Lax, prosecuting, said: “Police responded to a call about a possible drink-driver in a Ford Fiesta.

“They saw the vehicle parked in Heworth Road, Concord, with one person inside. This was Scott.

“As the approached him they could smell intoxicating liquor and his eyes were glazed.”

The court heard he told officers: “I’ve only driven from the top of Sulgrave.”

The defendant, who has no previous convictions, was found to have 52 microgrammes of alcohol in 100ml of breath – the legal limit being 35.

Scott, of Stockley Road, Barmston, pleaded guilty to driving with excess alcohol.

Tony Southwick, defending, said: “It’s a rather sad state of affairs. This young man gone out with his friends the previous night.

“He’s got up and thought he was in a condition to drive.

“He set off and has been stopped by the police, who have spoken to him and it’s 52 in breath. He had not long passed his driving test and that took some time.

“Because of problems he’s had that was an achievement in itself and he is mortified that he’s put himself in this situation.

“He was recently diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes and is on insulin, having only recently, prior to the incident, started his medication.

He added: “The question is what, if any, effect that would have on the process of his system dealing with the alcohol from the night before. He hadn’t thought of the impact – of how it could have affected his metabolic rate.”

Mr Southwick, however, said he had not sought to use the condition to deny the offence.

“He will be disqualified from driving,” Mr Southwick added. “He’s embarked on an apprenticeship at Nissan and it will have a significant impact upon him.”

Scott was fined £228 and was told to pay £30 surcharge and £85 costs.

He was banned from driving for 14 months.