Dad-of-four jailed for driving while high on cocaine was going to pick up kids, court hears

PUBLISHED: 14:16 11 September 2018 | UPDATED: 16:57 11 September 2018

London Road in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian Burt

London Road in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian Burt

Archant 2018

A man caught driving while high on cocaine told police he was in a rush to pick up his children and take them to McDonalds, a court heard.

Matthew Tuttle, 37, overtook two cars as they waited for an elderly woman to cross London Road in King’s Lynn on June 23 this year.

He was subsequently stopped by police and a blood sample revealed him to be more than six times the drug-drive limit for cocaine.

The father-of-four, of Bunnet Avenue in South Lynn, was jailed for eight months at Norwich Crown Court on Tuesday for dangerous driving.

Prosecutor Chris Youell said Tuttle told police during an interview that he was going to collect his children and take them to McDonalds.

“He obviously doesn’t mind transporting his children while under the influence of cocaine,” Mr Youell said.

The court heard how a CCTV camera caught Tuttle accelerating “reasonably hard” to overtake the two cars just as the woman made it across the road.

Mr Youell said the defendant did not come close to hitting her, but accepted that had she of fallen backwards he would not have been able to stop his car.

When asked about the drugs in his system, Tuttle told police he had recently used cocaine and cannabis, the court heard.

Tuttle claimed cocaine did not affect his driving, while cannabis “made him a better driver”.

A blood sample found he had 65 micrograms of cocaine per litre of blood in his system. The limit is 10 micrograms.

David Stewart, mitigating, said Tuttle, who previously worked as a pest controller, had a long history of cocaine misuse.

He said: “Every so often he manages to stop it, then something happens in his life and he reverts back to it.”

Mr Stewart added that the elderly lady crossing the road had “nearly completed her manoeuvre” as Tuttle drove past.

He said Tuttle’s speed would have been around 30mph at the time.

Tuttle, who has 19 convictions for 58 offences, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, driving without insurance, and drug driving.

Sentencing, Judge Anthony Bate said Tuttle had been previously caught for driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol.

He jailed him for eight months and disqualified him from driving for three years and four months.

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