A WOMAN of impeccable character was fined £500 and disqualified from driving for 19 months after pleading guilty to a drink driving offence.
Patricia Bettison, 58, of Lower Mill Lane, Holmfirth, was arrested on the evening of September 23 on New Mill Road, Kirklees Magistrates’ Court heard yesterday.
Prosecuting, Chris Rafferty, said the offence occurred at 7.25pm as the defendant attempted to negotiate a narrow road on which another vehicle was parked.
He said she was seen driving her VW Golf erratically, collided with the parked vehicle and bowled her car over leading to her being taken to hospital by ambulance.
When a blood/alcohol reading was taken it revealed she had 163 milligrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood. The legal limit is 80.
In mitigation, Mike Sisson-Pell said the defendant was a divorced woman with no children who had worked in the health service for many years but who had to retire because of ill-health in 2004.
He said her main concern was the care of her elderly mother who lived 25 miles away in Rotherham.
He said: “She is elderly and infirm and cannot manage on her own.”
Bettison had been to see her mother who had friends round and had served her a couple of gin and tonics.
He said: “She didn’t feel affected and felt well enough to drive.”
She had co-operated fully with police and had been very honest with them.
Mr Sisson-Pell added: “She is of impeccable character. You can imagine the impact this incident has had on her. It has caused her a huge amount of distress and stress.”
Fining her £500 with a further £100 in costs and disqualifying her from driving for 19 months, the chairman of the bench, Paulette Huntington, said Bettison was eligible to go on a drink driving scheme.
If she successfully completed it she would have the disqualification period reduced by 144 days.