Ban for teen drink-driver who crashed in to lamppost

Exeter Magistrates' Court

Exeter Magistrates' Court - Credit: Archant

A teenager from Sidford, who crashed his car into a lamppost while over the drink-drive limit, has been banned from getting behind the wheel for a year.

Toby Hartwell, of Trow Hill, pleaded guilty to a charge of drink-driving when he appeared at Exeter Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.

The 19-year-old was disqualified from driving for 12 months by district judge Stephen Nicholls, with the option to take a drink-driving rehabilitation course to reduce the ban. He also ordered Hartwell to pay a £200 fine, plus £255 in court costs.

Prosecutor Lindsey Baker said Hartwell was sorry for his actions.

The court heard that police found that a blue Mini had crashed into a lamppost in Vicarage Road, Sidmouth, at around 4am on Sunday, August 2.

Mrs Baker said that airbags had been deployed and scuffs on the lamppost matched the colour of the car. She added that Hartwell had been to a pub and then to a nightclub and he said he drank three pints of cider between 11pm and 1am.

“In interview, he said it was a mistake to get into the vehicle and showed genuine remorse for his actions,” said Mrs Baker.

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The court heard police found Hartwell at Sidmouth Victoria Hospital. The defendant said he was ‘a bit shocked’ but did not require any treatment.

He was arrested after being breathalysed, with a reading of 51 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35 microgrammes per 100 millilitres of breath.

Hartwell said: “It was a mistake, I have learnt my lesson.”

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