Driver’s ‘callous disregard for human life’

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A woman who was in court for another drink driving related offence was told she had ‘a callous disregard for human life’ as she was given suspended prison sentences.

Janet Bryans (46), Sinton Park, Tandragee, was sentenced last Wednesday at Craigavon Magistrates Court.

She had admitted motoring offences at a previous court and the case was adjourned for a pre-sentence report.

The court heard that on March 25 this year at 8.30pm police received a report of a suspected drink driver on the Portadown Road, Tandragee.

She had caused another vehicle to veer into the oncoming lane.

When police located Bryans she showed the usual signs of intoxication and she was taken to Banbridge custody suite where she failed to provide a specimen of breath.

When she was asked if she had anything to drink she said a couple of glasses of lambresco and confirmed she had been driving earlier in the evening.

Mr Conor Downey, representing the defendant, said she knew she was a very precarious position.

He added that her licence had been revoked on medical grounds and she was someone who not had her sorrows to seek. Mr Downey urged the judge to leave something hanging over her heard.

District Judge, Mrs Bernie Kelly, said she had been ‘doing this job a long time and I’ve never come across anyone with so many constant appearances in court for drunk driving’.

She pointed out that Bryans already had four entries on her record, there was another drunk driving in the Armagh court so by the time she was finished it would be six in total.

“Drunk driving is a selfish act,” added the judge. “You are saying you don’t care for the lives of other road users. You had consumed a bottle of wine. Your callous disregard for human life is unbelievable.”

For driving while unfit and failing to provide a specimen Bryans was sentenced to four months in prison, suspended for three years, and banned for five years.

She was fined £200, ordered to pay a £15 offender’s levy and disqualified for 12 months for driving without due care and attention.

Judge Kelly also ordered forfeiture of the car the defendant was driving.