‘Dog must have released brake’

A MOTORIST who drove while over the limit and was caught out by police after his car collided with another vehicle has claimed his dog had let off the handbrake.

William Jessup had travelled to Wetherspoons in Hailsham after receiving a telephone call from a friend who was at the public house and was having trouble with a man there.

Eastbourne magistrates heard the vehicle had collided with a parked vehicle.

Police officers arrived at the scene and spoke to the defendant who failed a roadside breath test.

He was then offered the chance to have a reading in blood but opted for a urine sample to be taken. This showed he had 147mcg of alcohol in 100 ml of urine. The legal limit is 108 mcg.

Jessup, of Hailsham Road, Polegate, and of previous good character, pleaded guilty to driving with excess alcohol.

Christos Christou, defending, said, “Mr Jessup has pleaded guilty at the first opportunity and is entitled to maximum credit. In interview he fully admitted the offence.

“He is obviously quite upset to find himself in this situation. He had been at home with a friend and was just about to eat and had had about a glass of wine.”

Mr Christou said after being asked by the friend if he could pick her up, and thinking he would be under the limit, Jessup, 44, headed to the pub in George Street.

After checking on the lady, Mr Christou said his client went to park the car.

He added, “He parked it up and went to get this friend and as he did he saw his dog jump over the front of the car and must have released the handbrake.

“He has no previous convictions whatsoever. He understands he will be disqualified but I ask you to keep to the minimal disqualification if possible.

“He was diagnosed with meningitis a couple of years ago, he lost his home through redundancy and is living in a caravan.”

Jessup was disqualified for 12 months and can reduce his ban by three months if he takes part in the drink driver rehabilitation course.

He was fined £85 and must also pay £85 costs and a £15 victim surcharge.