Care worker disqualified for drink driving after attending friend’s birthday celebrations

A care worker charged with drink driving after attending a friend’s birthday celebrations has been disqualified for a year.

Collette Hunter, 52, was also fined £380 after pleading guilty to the offence at Lerwick Sheriff Court today (Tuesday).

Procurator fiscal Duncan Mackenzie told the court Hunter had been stopped by police for a minor infraction on the A970 at Brindister at around 12.30am on 11th July.

He said the police officer could smell drink on her and she failed a roadside test.

According to court documents, Hunter, of Hardbrakes Place, Dunrossness, recorded 38 microgrammes in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 22 microgrammes.

Defence agent Tommy Allan said Hunter “cared deeply” about her job as a care worker and urged Sheriff Ian Cruickshank to impose the minimum disqualification period possible.

Mr Allan said Hunter had been celebrating a friend’s birthday on the evening before she was pulled over.

“She arrived late afternoon at which point everybody had been drinking for a considerable period of time,” Mr Allan said.

He said his client had just two drinks although she was also aware they had been poured by her host and were not necessarily standard measures.

Although the group went on to celebrate at two pubs, Mr Allan said Hunter drank only soft drinks for the rest of the evening.

He said she had intended to spend the night at her friend’s house.

However, when she went to fetch her overnight bag from her car towards the end of the evening, she decided instead to go home.

At this stage, Mr Allan said Hunter “fully expected” to be under the limit.

“This is not a case where she went out to drive in full knowledge she would have been over the limit,” he said.

Mr Allan said his client had pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity and would be prepared to attend a drink driver rehabilitation course.

Sheriff Cruickshank said he had taken into account the fact Hunter was not “hugely” over the limit when imposing the sentence.

He fined her £380 and disqualified her from driving for 12 months.

He also offered her the option of reducing the period of disqualification by a quarter by taking a drink driver rehabilitation course.


Get Latest News in Your Inbox

Join the The Shetland Times mailing list to get one daily email update at midday on what's happening in Shetland.