Accused of Christmas drink driving

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A 39-year-old man has appeared in court accused of drink driving on Boxing Day.

John McBride, of Norburgh Park, is charged with driving whilst unfit, dangerous driving, failing to stop for police and having no insurance. The offences allegedly occurred in the early hours of December 26.

Derry Magistrate’s Court heard allegations that police received a 999 call from the 39-year-old’s home and their attention was drawn to a white car as they made their way to the address. The car was allegedly being driven in an erratic manner along the Northland Road and police followed it.

It is alleged the car was “travelling at speed” and when police signalled for it to stop it collided with a pavement.

The court heard officers eventually stopped the car on the Coshquin Road and McBride was found in the rear of the car.

However, police believe the 39-year-old was the driver.

A breath test gave a reading of 80mg of alcohol in 100ml of breath. The court heard that McBride was granted police bail and ordered to abide by a curfew and banned from consuming alcohol.

However, police were called to a car accident later that night and McBride was a passenger in the vehicle. The court was told he had breached his bail by being out after his curfew and had an alcohol reading of 113mg in 100ml of breath.

Opposing bail, the investigating officer said McBride has a relevant criminal record and police believe “he poses a risk to road users by driving with drink in his system”.

She added that police feared the 39-year-old would not abide by bail conditions.

Defence solicitor Seamus Quigley said his client accepted the “flagrant breach” of the conditions imposed by police.

He added McBride wished to apologise for his “gross stupidity in ignoring the conditions”.

Granting bail, District Judge Barney McElholm warned McBride if there is any further breach he will be remanded in custody.

The 39-year-old was released on his own bail of £1,000, with a surety of £750 and will be electronically tagged.

He was also banned from consuming alcohol and from being in a private car.

McBride will appear in court again on January 24.