Joiner was locked out of house by accident

A Castledawson joiner who reversed his van a “very short distance”, has been fined £250 with a £15 offender levy and given five penalty points at Magherafelt Magistrates Court on Wednesday for driving with excess alcohol in breath.

District Judge Oonagh Mullan said she would not disqualify John McCann (37) from Millview, but the penalty points would take him up to 11 points.

The judge had adjourned the case from an earlier court to check how many penalty points the defendant had on his licence.

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The court had heard on July 15 at 12.05am, a police patrol spotted a van being reversed from Millview to Bridge Street in Castledawson. Prosecuting counsel said they spoke to the defendant and detected a strong smell of intoxicating lager and noted that his speech was slurred. McCann later provided a specimen which showed an alcohol reading of 51mgs.


McCann in evidence, said he had arrived home from his father’s house and had bought some groceries for the next day and a few cans of lager. He said he found himself locked out and his wife was in bed and because it was late he did want to wake up everyone. He had sent text messages and made calls to her to open the door. He said he drank the cans of lager and had decided to reverse the van out as he had an early start. Defence lawyer Michael Forde said McCann had been locked out by accident and it was “unfortunate set of circumstances”.