Man fell asleep in car after walking home

A Magherafelt man who was found sleeping in the driving seat of his car, was given 10 penalty points at the local Magistrates Court on Wednesday for being in charge of the vehicle while unfit through drink.

Monday, 12th April 2021, 10:34 am

Aidan McGinn (35), of Sperrin Drive, was also fined £300 with a £15 offender levy arising out of the incident on July 4 last year.

Bail of £300 was fixed for the purposes of an appeal against the sentence.

After hearing from the defendant, Deputy District Judge Noel Dunlop said a case had not been made against the charge and, accordingly, there would be a conviction.

Courtroom.

McGinn told the court he had gone to a public house at Rainey Street to celebrate his recovery from major surgery when the bars reopened after the first lockdown.

He explained that he had been living at his mother’s address but at the end of the night he decided to go to his home address at Highfield Road, a five minute walk, from the bar. The defendant said as he walked home it was raining and he discovered he had left his jacket in the bar and set of keys for the house. It was raining heavy and he was soaked and used an App to get into his car parked outside his home, he continued.

McGinn said he should have got into the back seat as he intended to sleep in the car and had no intention of driving.

He said he was there about 15 minutes when the police banged on the car window to waken him and “struck me with a baton twice”.

A PPS lawyer said McGinn was in the driving seat, the engine was running and the lights were on.

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