A HUSBAND who got into his car outside their home after having a row with his wife has been found not guilty of being drunk in charge of a vehicle.
Tony Drumm (56) of The Brook appeared at Enniskillen Magistrates Court last Wednesday where he successfully contested the charge, and where he entered a guilty plea to a charge of cannabis possession.
On Sunday, October 16 at approximately 4.30pm police observed Drumm sitting in the driver’s seat of a blue Nissan Micra. They approached the defendant, knocked on the window, and asked him to get out of the car.
The officers noticed a smell of alcohol from Drumm. He was arrested for being drunk in charge of a vehicle, and when taken to Enniskillen Police Station he returned an evidential breath reading of 65 micrograms per 100ml of breath.
When interviewed, Drumm explained he’d had an argument with his wife and left the house. He said he’d gone to the car as he had nowhere else to go and didn’t want to walk back into his house.
Drumm, who’d been drinking vodka at home, said he’d been sitting in the car for 20 minutes when police arrived, and had not started the car at any point. He told the police he intended on sleeping in the car that evening, and had a blanket already in the car.
The defendant told police he’d been due to start work at 5pm, half an hour after they approached him, and said he would have arranged a taxi. Drumm also told them the car rarely started as it had a problem with its starter, and always remained parked on the road outside their house.
Drumm said he hadn’t tried to start the car on that afternoon, and had not intended to. He pointed out to police that they’d found the car’s key in his pocket, not in the ignition.
District Judge Nigel Broderick said he was satisfied Drumm had no intention to drive the car, and dismissed the charge.
Drumm had also pleaded guilty to possessing cannabis. Judge Broderick said it would’ve been a small amount of the drug if it had been his first offence, but he had a previous drug conviction. He fined Drumm “a week’s wages” of £250.
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