Driver flouted ban in pursuit of his breakfast

A BANNED driver hopped into his mum’s convertible and drove to McDonald’s for breakfast.

Eastbourne magistrates had disqualified Craig Murphy, 29, of Princes Street, for three years just four days before for drink driving - and he had previously been banned for 20 months in June 2007 for a similar offence.

But Murphy, who had drunk 10 lagers at a party which lasted until 3am on March 19, decided to jump into his mum’s blue BMW and drive to the fast food restaurant in Lottbridge Drove.

He bought two meals from the drive-through within half an hour and the cashier then noticed his wobbly and heavy-handed driving.

Police spotted Murphy tucking into his second breakfast in a parking bay nearby.

When he saw them approaching he sped off.

Police traced him to his home in Princes Drive where they found him fumbling with a CD in the driver’s seat.

Prosecutor Claire Prodger told Eastbourne Magistrates Court that when he noticed officers he tried to drop his keys into the foot well of the car.

A roadside breath test showed he was over the limit but he refused to provide a specimen at the police station.

Murphy pleaded guilty to driving while disqualified, failing to provide a specimen and driving without insurance at Eastbourne Magistrates’ Court on March 21.

Helen Wallace, defending, said he suffered from schizophrenia, dyslexia and might also be autistic.

“While it’s very hard to persuade you of his inability to think things through, he was used to just being able to drive his mother’s car,” she added.

“In this instance clearly he was not insured and I cannot get away from the fact that he was disqualified but his inability to think things through is down to his serious mental health issues.”

Magistrates ordered a psychiatric brief, followed by a full probation report before sentencing.

He was released on the condition he would not enter any motor vehicle. He is due to return before magistrates on April 18.