Ex-cop clocks up second drink driving offence

Burnley Magistrates Court
Burnley Magistrates Court

An ex-police officer was caught more than twice the limit after he clocked up his second drink driving offence when crashing into another car on the M65, a court heard.

Colin Stansfield (58), who served in the force for 10 years, collided with a vehicle containing two elderly women at about 7pm. He blew 72 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35.

Burnley Magistrates’ Court was told Stansfield had suffered a job-related breakdown after working 70 hours a week as a maintenance engineer, but only being paid for 42. He was on anti-depressants and shouldn’t have been drinking.

The defendant, who had been convicted of excess alcohol in February 2006, had given up alcohol for nine years, but struck again when he met up with his ex-wife and daughter, who had just given birth. He had had three or four pints to celebrate.

Stansfield, who now has a new partner, a florist, and lives at Rostle Top Road, Earby, admitted drink driving at Nelson on November 5th.

He was told by Deputy District Judge Joanne Hirst that only his guilty plea saved him from a custodial sentence.

She said the defendant, who has now lost his job, should not have been drinking on his medication.

The deputy district judge said: “It almost makes it more incredulous that you were to make this decision.”

Stansfield was banned for two years. He was given a 12-month community order with a 25-day rehabilitation activity requirement and 150 hours unpaid work and must pay £85 costs and an £85 victim surcharge.

Miss Deanne McGinty (defending Stansfield) said nobody was injured in the collision.

She said: “He feels a great deal of shame in relation to this type of offence.”

Probation officer Mr Elliott Smith, who interviewed Stansfield, said the defendant turned to drink because of the stress of work.

He had been travelling about 500 miles a week and “went overboard” when he had a drink.

Mr Smith said: “He was planning on going to see his girlfriend. Clearly, he took the decision to drive and admits that was a foolish one.”