Drunk landscape gardener crashed work van into wall

Beach Road in Hemsby during the midweek Easter holidays.
April 2016
Picture: James Bass

Michael Dodson crashed his work van in Beach Road, Hemsby - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2016

A landscape gardener crashed his work van into a wall in a seaside village while over the drink drive limit, a court heard.

Michael Dodson was seen with blood on his face and was slurring his words after his white Ford van crashed into a property in Hemsby.

Magistrates heard Dodson, 36,  then ran away from the scene of the crash in Beach Road and told police he was not the driver.

However Dodson then admitted he was the driver once he was later questioned by police and given a breath test, which revealed he was over the limit.

Dodson, of Wright Close, Caister, pleaded guilty to drink driving in Beach Road in Hemsby on March 15 when he appeared at Great Yarmouth Magistrates' Court on Wednesday.

Steven De La Salle will stand trial at Great Yarmouth Magistrates Court on November 24 2020. Google

Michael Dodson was sentenced at Great Yarmouth Magistrates' Court - Credit: Google Maps

Simone Walsh, prosecuting, said Dodson appeared "extremely drunk"and was slurring his words after the crash and had led police on a chase.

Ms Walsh said: "He was visibly intoxicated and had blood on his face."

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Dodson at first claimed a friend had been driving his work van.

He gave a breath test reading of 70 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath - the legal limit being 35 microgrammes.

The court heard Dodson had a previous drink drive conviction from 2018.

Arthur Balls, mitigating, said Dodson had taken "the stupid decision" to drive after an issue at home and decided to drive to a friend's home after he had been drinking.

The court heard Dodson had not had a drink since the crash and was paying to repair the damage to the Hemsby property.

Dodson has also arranged to take on a new employee from next month to drive him around to jobs as he knew he would lose his licence due to his latest conviction.

He also apologised for his actions, which he said had caused £1,000 of damage to his van.

Magistrates banned Dodson from driving for 14 months, fined him £600 and ordered him to pay costs of £105 and £60 victim surcharge.

Sentencing Dodson, chair of the magistrates bench Adrian Greenwood said: "We should be thankful no one was walking were you crashed."