Woman who drink-drove in ‘panic’ after family party banned from driving in Jersey for 18 months

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A WOMAN who drove while over the legal alcohol limit – and failed to turn up for her initial Magistrate’s Court appearance – has been fined £2,500 and banned from driving in Jersey.

The court heard that Charlotte Francis (41) was driving along Mont Millais at 11pm on 27 December when traffic officers noticed the light on her rear number plate was not working.

Advocate Luke Sette, prosecuting, said Francis failed a roadside breath test and undertook a test at States police headquarters, which gave a reading of 62 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35 micrograms.

Francis was due to appear in court on 1 February but failed to attend.

Advocate John Borg, defending, explained that Francis had been at a family birthday party on the evening in question and had planned to spend the night at her parents’ house but then realised she had forgotten to bring important medication with her.

‘In a moment’s panic, she drove home to obtain the medication,’ he said.

He added that she had no previous convictions and had been co-operative with the police, saying: ‘Miss Francis is a lady of good character.’

Magistrate Bridget Shaw fined her £2,000 for drinking and driving, £100 for failing to surrender to court and an additional £400 for eight parking offences.

Francis plans to move to Hampshire to start a new job, but Mrs Shaw banned her from driving in Jersey for 18 months and said she must retake the Jersey driving test if she wanted to drive here again.

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