Jailed for ‘scandalous’ driving

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A man with a ‘terrible’ criminal record has been jailed for five months for driving offences.

John James McBride, of Lower Galliagh Road, pleaded guilty to failing to stop for police, dangerous diving, driving with excess alcohol and having no insurance.

The charges relate to an incident in December last year.

Derry Magistrates Court heard that police attempted to stop the 39-year-old’s car because it was being driven ‘erratically’ in the Springtown area of the city. The car collided with a kerb and then drove off at speed.

Police came across the car a second time and signalled for it to stop, however this time McBride swerved around police. The court heard when police approached the vehicle, McBride had got out of the front seat and into the back passenger seat and the car began to roll because the handbrake had not been applied.

A breath sample was taken from McBride which gave a reading of 80mg of alcohol in 100ml of breath - over two times the legal drink drive limit.

Defence solicitor Seamus Quigley accepted the 39-year-old has a ‘terrible record’ and has over 30 previous driving convictions.

He told the court thankfully no injury or damage was caused by McBride’s driving on this occasion.

Passing sentence, District Judge Barney McElholm said the 39-year-old has an ‘absolutely deplorable record’ which includes four previous convictions for dangerous driving. l

He said the only reason there was no crash during this ‘scandalous piece of driving’ was because of the evasive action of other drivers. McBride was jailed for five months, fined £1,100 and banned from driving for two years.