Drunk man found slumped over driver’s wheel, court hears

A man who was discovered drunkenly slumped over the wheel of his car was given a 10-year driving disqualification at Ballina District Court this week by Judge William Hamill.

Sergeant James Murphy came across Raimondas Kalibatas, 9 Aylesbury Lodge, Navan, Co Meath slumped across the driver’s wheel on May 2 2008. The defendant then tried to start the car, however he was arrested on the suspicion of drink driving, A blood sample provided by the defendant showed a reading of 331mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood.

The court heard that the defendant has two previous driving disqualifications and in fact was disqualified at the time of detection, even though the driver presented a driving licence and insurance at the time.

Judge Hamill said to Superintendent Pat McHugh that currently there is no system in place where insurance companies are notified if a person is disqualified from driving, which has “road safety implications”, as people who are disqualified may not hand in their licence and are continuing to get insurance after not telling insurance companies about their disqualifications.

The defendant, a 34-year-old Lithuanian man who had been in Mayo that day for a fishing trip, was given a 10-year driving disqualification by the judge and remanded on continuing bail to July 12 for a community service assessment report. If found suitable the defendant would complete 120 hours in lieu of three months in prison.

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