'Made a foolish decision'

'Made a foolish decision'

The case was heard at Craigavon Magistrates' Court.

Staff reporter

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Friday 1 July 2022 16:00

A father-of-three, who drove a car whilst disqualified and without insurance, has been warned he will go to prison “as a guarantee” if he comes before the court with further motoring offences.

The case of David Robert Wallace, (34), of Victor Mews, Craigavon, was heard at Craigavon Courthouse sitting on Wednesday, June 29.

The court heard that on January 25 this year, police were on mobile patrol in Dollingstown and stopped a black coloured vehicle as it was showing no insurance.

The defendant was driving, he was advised as to why he was stopped and admitted to having no insurance.

A further check of systems showed he was a disqualified driver and made full admissions to all matters.

In his defence, the court was told that Wallace was one week off finishing a three-month ban that was imposed in November 2021. It was stressed that he made a foolish decision to enter the car to fulfil a request by his youngest child’s mother.

It was outlined that Wallace had recently separated from this lady and he decided to drive to keep things amicable between the two parties.

A defence solicitor explained that Wallace allows private life issues to overcome him and his senses, with this situation meaning he finds himself before the court again.

Furthermore, it was stated in court that the defendant has contact with his children “who are his world” and the loss of his licence will make it more difficult to travel to see them, as well as keeping his employment.

District Judge Bernie Kelly said: “This is a relatively straightforward sentencing exercise as far as I’m concerned.

“The court had adjourned for a pre-sentence report and the object of that report gives me the opportunity of a community based sentence but you’ve ruled that out.

“I never understand that logic, you rule them out because it would interfere with your employment despite the fact if you go to prison, you will have no employment.”

The Judge imposed a three month custodial sentence for no insurance and a four month custodial sentence for driving whilst disqualified.

The periods of custody are to run concurrently with each other and were suspended for a period of three years.

In addition, the defendant was disqualified from driving on both charges for a period of nine months.

A forfeiture order of the vehicle was also imposed.

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