Drunk learner driver John New drove like the 'dodgems' - court
JOHN New was two and a half times over the drink drive limit when he took two women on a drive which ended with him crashing into two cars – and a house.
The learner driver, 23, of Longlands Road, Bishop's Cleeve, who has never passed a test drove 'as if he was playing on the dodgems,' Gloucester Crown Court heard.
The car was owned by one of the women but she had been feeling unwell and asked New if he would drive them home from a pub.
But the two women were horrified as New drove at speed around Bishop's Cleeve, throwing them from side to side in the back seat.
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"His driving swiftly became somewhat alarming," said prosecutor Lisa Hennessy.
"He drove far too fast. One of the women shouted to him to stop but he didn't. He didn't even slow down when she was hitting him on the shoulder.
"He was laughing but both women were shouting and screaming."
Mrs Hennessy said New was supposed to be driving them to the home of one of the women, Victoria Adkins, in Bishop's Cleeve.
But he went past it and drove two-three times around a square at Hanson Gardens.
He smashed into a parked Landrover Discovery owned by resident Tony Smith – then swerved into Mr Smith's house and hit the front wall, causing damage which cost between £15,000-£20,000 to repair.
Finally, New reversed back into a parked Nissan car. He stopped, jumped out and ran off but was found nearby a short time later by police.
Mrs Hennessy said the car owner, Gemma Lewis, and Ms Adkins were both very shaken.
The pair had met New and his brother earlier that evening in the Royal Oak pub at Bishop's Cleeve and had invited them back to her home. Police found New was two and a half times over the drink drive limit, said Mrs Hennessy.
New admitted dangerous driving on July 20, excess alcohol, driving not in accordance with his provisional licence, having no insurance and failing to stop after an accident.
Nicola Berryman, defending, said New's employers had shut down for the summer holiday and he had drank more than he would normally have.
Judge Jamie Tabor QC told New his clean record, good job and early guilty plea had saved him from going to jail.
New was given an eight month jail term suspended for two years and banned from driving for 21 months.
He was also ordered to do 150 hours of unpaid work and to pay £2,500 compensation to Mr Smith.
The judge also fined him £750.