Had been off drink for 16 years before detection

Court gavel
Court gavel

A mother of two has been banned from driving for a year after driving home from work under the influence.

Appearing before East Tyrone Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday was Caroline Hughes, 52, of Old Omagh Road in Ballygawley.

She pleaded guilty at the first opportunity to driving with excess alcohol in blood at Old Ballygawley Road on October 14th.

The court heard how police received a call from a member of the public on the evening of October 14th stating that they believed Ms Hughes was driving a Renault car home from work under the influence of alcohol.

Police observed her vehicle over several miles before stopping her. She failed the roadside breath test and was arrested, subsequently providing a sample that was over the limit.

Mr Ruairi Maguire, defending, told the court that his client was from an “unhappy background” which included a marriage break-up.

“There was a historic issue with alcohol which re-emerged having been off drink for sixteen years.

“She was at work... and due to difficulties arising did consume alcohol.

“She is a mother of two... and has been driving for 33 years with nothing on her record.”

District Judge John Meehan handed down a fine of £200 and a twelve-month driving disqualification, ordering a 25 per cent reduction in the ban upon the completion of the drink driver’s course.