Drunk driver is jailed over Asda car park rage
A DRUNK driver who knocked over a mother and daughter during a road rage incident in a supermarket car park has been jailed.
Brian White was more than twice the legal limit when he struck Leslie Miller and her elderly mum with his car, leaving both victims injured.
The 45-year-old was in a rage with Ms Miller over her driving.
He gesticulated at her from his driving seat as they pulled into the Asda car park in Dunbar, East Lothian.
After stopping, White jumped out to confront her, even though she had her elderly parents and a six-year-old with her.
During the argument, Ms Miller’s father, Leslie O’Brien, smelled alcohol on White’s breath and began shouting for passing shoppers to call the police. He then tried to grab the car keys to prevent White from driving.
White, however, managed to get back into his car and started it up before running the vehicle into Ms Miller and her mother, Irene O’Brien.
Ms Miller suffered severe bruising to her back and right ankle following the smash, while Mrs O’Brien bruised her wrist and forearm.
After hearing details about the case, Sheriff Peter Braid told White he had “no alternative” but to send him to prison.
White, of Aitken Court, Dunbar, had a previous conviction for drink-driving, Haddington Sheriff Court heard.
He had earlier admitted driving with 73mg of alcohol in 100ml of breath at the supermarket in the town’s Spott Road on February 15. But charges of dangerous driving against him were dropped after his not guilty plea was accepted by the Crown.
White also faced charges of driving dangerously at excessive speeds while the driver’s door remained open, reversing over Ms Miller’s leg, striking her on the head with the car and striking Mrs O’Brien on the body with the car, causing injury to both women.
His not guilty plea also covered these aspects of the case.
Solicitor Angela Craig told the court her client was “seeking assistance for his alcohol problem” and added he had not drunk any alcohol since the incident.
Ms Craig said he had “panicked” following the incident and that it was “a gross misjudgment on his part”.
Sentencing White, Sheriff Braid said he had to cage him.
He said: “This is your second drink-driving offence and you were over twice the limit.
“As a consequence of your driving you injured two people, and I’ve come to the conclusion there is no alternative to a custodial sentence.”
Sheriff Braid sentenced White to four months in prison, and also banned him from driving for four years.
Speaking after sentencing, Mr and Mrs O’Brien, from Dunbar, said they did not want to comment about the case.
We revealed in March how drink-drive limits are set to be cut following a public consultation.
Under the new limit anyone caught behind the wheel with 50mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood – down from 80mg – will be breaking the law.
However, the change is unlikely to happen before next year, as police equipment has to be recalibrated first.
The Scottish Government says anyone who drinks more than a pint of standard strength beer, a small spirit or glass of wine and then drives would be in danger of breaking the law.