Derby duo spared jail term

The Daily Telegraph - Sport - - Football - By Dave Higgens

Derby County play­ers Tom Lawrence and Ma­son Ben­nett avoided prison for drink-driv­ing af­ter a court heard of con­cerns that they would strug­gle in cus­tody.

Lawrence and Ben­nett’s cars crashed shortly be­fore mid­night on Sept 24. Both ad­mit­ted drink-driv­ing and fail­ing to stop at the scene of an ac­ci­dent at Derby Mag­is­trates Court yes­ter­day. District judge Jonathan Taaf­fee had warned that a prison sen­tence was an op­tion but pro­ba­tion ser­vices told the hear­ing of con­cerns the play­ers would strug­gle in cus­tody.

They were or­dered to carry out 180 hours of un­paid work, and banned from driv­ing for two years.

Lawrence, 25, had a breath-test read­ing of 58 mi­cro­grammes per 100ml and Ben­nett, 23, a level of 64. The le­gal limit is 35.

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