A farmer who drove drunk while he was attending his land was disqualified from driving for six years at this week’s sitting of Ballina District Court.
The facts of the case were outlined at a previous court sitting. On April 11 2012 gardaí observed Pat Murphy, Toreen, Crossmolina, crossing the road from side to side. He was arrested on suspicion of drink driving at Enniscoe, Crossmolina. At the Garda station he provided a blood sample which showed 229mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood.
Solicitor Michael Bohan said that his client “is an unfortunate case” and has a lot of health conditions “all brought on from indulgence of alcohol”. Mr Bohan said that the 65-year-old single man does not drink in pubs, but in the house, and when he was stopped by gardaí he was on a high level of medication.
Murphy has three previous drink driving convictions.
Judge Mary Devins said she would consider an adjournment for medical evidence if Murphy would give an undertaking not to drink between now and the adjourned date. Murphy told the court he was sorry and said that he will never drive again on a public highway, only drive his tractor in the yard. He said that he would give his jeep to his brother and will soon lease his land and go to Hope House.
“I’ll never drive again, you understand that,” he said. Judge Devins said, “I understand perfectly well. Do you understand?”
The case was adjourned at this week’s court where it was heard that the defendant is currently in hospital. Mr Bohan said that he does not know if the jeep has been sold.
Judge Devins convicted and fined Murphy €750 and disqualified him from driving for six years. The judge also sentenced him to three months in prison, suspended for 12 months, if no drink driving convictions are recorded.