Went for groceries and drank wine


When he was breath tested after he was found drunk in a car a 58-year-old man was almost four times the drink driving limit.

William Stephen Cousins, Kensington Manor, Dollingstown, admitted being in charge of a motor vehicle with excess alcohol in breath on August 1 this year.

He was fined £175, ordered to pay a £15 offender’s levy and banned from driving for six months.

The court heard that police received a call about a drunk male trying to get into a car at the car park of the Waves complex in Robert Street, Lurgan.

When police arrived they found Cousins on his own in the car, the keys were in the ignition and there was a bottle of wine in the side pocket of the driver’s side.

The defendant mumbled and slurred his words and a breath test gave a reading of 137 - the legal limit is 35.

A barrister representing Cousins said there was no way to mediate against the level of alcohol.

He added that his client had a completely clear record and there were no points on his licence.

The barrister explained that Cousins had left his house at 4.30pm and went to get some groceries and alcohol. He parked up the car and drank out of a bottle of wine.

He added that when the police arrived at the scene it was his client’s intention to walk home.

The solicitor said that Cousins had been teaching for 34 years and took his son to football and basketball training in Belfast. Given the level of the reading he accepted he was going to be disqualified.

District Judge, Mr Mervyn Bates, said this case could not be dealt with by points because the reading was so high.

He added that the reading was four times the limit and who knows what would have happened if Cousins had decided to drive.