Drink drive mother banned for four months

The Oban Times - - NEWS -

A MOTHER of three has been banned for driv­ing for four months af­ter she was caught driv­ing at al­most three times the le­gal al­co­hol limit on Kil­mallie Road, Caol.

Fort Wil­liam Sher­iff Court heard on Mon­day April 24 that Emma Nor­val, 35, had been driv­ing to a friend’s house af­ter be­ing locked out of her then home in Caol by her then part­ner when she was ar­rested on October 30 last year for driv­ing on Kil­mallie Road with a blood al­co­hol level of 58mi­cro­grams, while the le­gal limit is 22.

Nor­val had been liv­ing with her then part­ner, the father of her youngest child, for al­most a year at this point and she told the court he was ‘ very pos­ses­sive and con­trol­ling’.

On October 29, Nor­val said there was an ‘aw­ful at­mos­phere’ in the house and her ex-part­ner had be­come ver­bally abu­sive af­ter she had cooked him a meal he didn’t want.

She said she had ‘a cou­ple of glasses of wine’ early in the evening and went for a walk to clear her head at around 7.30pm af­ter fail­ing to get her part­ner to talk things through.

When she re­turned af­ter around 20 min­utes she found he had bolted the front door from the inside, lock­ing her out.

Un­able to get in, she sat in the car for around five hours and, af­ter try­ing one more time to gain ac­cess, she de­cided she needed to get help and at­tempted to drive to Up­per Ach­in­tore, but her part­ner called the po­lice and she was stopped not far from the house and ar­rested.

Solic­i­tor Hamish Mel­rose told the court the de­fence po­si­tion was that Nor­val had the de­fence of ne­ces­sity be­cause of the sit­u­a­tion and her des­per­a­tion to get to her chil­dren in the house.

Procu­ra­tor Fis­cal Martina East­wood said this de­fence could not be used as Nor­val had other op­tions in­clud­ing ask­ing to use a neigh­bour’s phone to get help or walk­ing and be­cause she had waited five hours be­fore de­cid­ing it was nec­es­sary to drive away.

She added there was no im­me­di­ate dan­ger of bod­ily harm to Nor­val or any­one else.

Mr Mel­rose ar­gued there was dan­ger to her men­tal state and that she had not ex­pected to have been locked out for five hours.

Sher­iff Wil­liam Tay­lor agreed with the procu­ra­tor fis­cal and said: ‘The facts of the case are that she sat do­ing noth­ing for five hours. Her moth­er­ing in­stincts should have taken her into a neigh­bour’s house’.

As well as the four-month driv­ing ban, the sher­iff fined Nor­val £200.

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