Mansfield alcoholic was more than four times over drink-drive limit

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An alcoholic who was found slumped behind the wheel of his van while more than four times the legal limit has avoided a jail sentence.

Michael Cheesemond (61) of Woodland Crescent, Mansfield, admitted downing half a bottle of whisky before he was spotted on Blackscotch Lane early one morning by a woman who knew him. She realised he was intoxicated before he drove off, swerving across the road.

The police were called and found Cheesemond asleep, parked in the middle of the road with the brake lights on and the keys still in the ignition.

When he got out of the van it began rolling backward so the officers had to intervene to put the handbrake on.

The defendant admitted driving while disqualified, driving without insurance and driving under the influence. He blew a reading of 149mcgs of alcohol in 100mls of breath. The legal limit is 35mcgs.

Defending himself at Mansfield Magistrates’ Court, he admitted he was an alcoholic, and was also on medication for his depression.

He said despite being banned from driving , for previous convictions of drink driving, and refusing to provide a specimen for analysis, he said he had decide to take the van to a dog-walking spot because it was ‘just round the corner’.

He said his sons had now taken the van off him to prevent any temptation, and he was seeking help from his GP for his alcoholism.

The magistrates warned him he could face jail at a previous hearing, but on probation recommendations gave him a community order with a three-month curfew, and made him pay £295 in costs.