‘You haven’t much to be doing,’ police told

Dungannon Courthouse
Dungannon Courthouse

A Pomeroy pensioner has escaped a driving ban thanks to his “long career of driving without incident”, a court has heard.

Appearing before East Tyrone Magistrate’s Court to plead guilty to being in charge of a car with excess alcohol in blood was Felix Nugent, 79, from Park Avenue.

The court heard how police were travelling along The Diamond in Pomeroy on the night of November 19 when they observed two men walking towards a parked car.

Both men were noted to have been unsteady on their feet. They then climbed into a vehicle and turned on the car.

The constables turned and walked towards the car which, they saw, had its windscreen partially cleared of frost.

Both men got out of the car. Mr Nugent was unable to provide a breath sample.

“We had 500 metres to go,” he commented during his arrest. “You haven’t much to be doing.”

His blood sample was over one and a half times the legal limit and he later claimed to have been running the car to keep warm while awaiting a friend to pick him up.

“He will be 80 years old this year,” said Mr Aidan Quinn, defending. “He is married and is the only driver in his house.

“He provides care to other aged people in the Pomeroy community and I would ask imposing points rather than a driving ban.”

District Judge John Meehan handed down ten penalty points and a £100 fine “after a long career of driving without incident”.