Brendan Greenan, Knock Road, Katesbridge, admitted a drunk-in-charge offence when he appeared last Thursday at Banbridge Magistrates Court.
He was fined £250, given ten penalty points and ordered to pay a £15 offender’s levy. The court heard that on September 7 this year police were tasked to Lisnacroppan Road, Rathfriland.
As they approached the lights of the car were on and the found that the key was in the ignition.
Greenan was asleep in the driver’s seat and when he was roused he was incomprehensible when he tried to speak.
He smelled of intoxicating liquor and an evidential breath test gave a reading of 105.
A solicitor representing the defendant said that on the night in question Greenan had no place to stay.
He added that where he was found was a short distance from the matrimonial home. It was a narrow country road where he had pulled in to sleep.
The solicitor explained that Greenan had no other place to go and took alcohol to help him sleep.
He had no intention to drive and he co-operated with police.
He told the court that the defendant had not taken alcohol since this incident and he had since reconciled with his wife. The solicitor told the court his client was a hard working man who delivered wood and his licence was important to him.
He said that the defendant’s youngest child had been in a serious road traffic accident which had left him in a wheelchair and Greenan had to bring him to school and to any medical appointments.
The solicitor asked the court to give his client the opportunity to stay on the road and impose points.
District Judge, Mr Paul Copeland, said that because of the family circumstances, the defendant’s employment and the fact he co-operated with the police he would not disqualify him on this occasion.
But, he added, any repetition would lead to him being disqualified for a significant period of time.