Belfast Telegraph

Drink-driving student (21) 'wanted to kill herself in a crash'

By Alan Erwin

A drink-driver was planning to kill herself by crashing into a wall, a court has heard. Frances O'Neill was stopped when friends blocked her route and took the keys from the car as she drove down a south Belfast street.

The 21-year-old student social worker was banned from driving for 18 months and fined £250 after admitting to driving with excess alcohol.

Belfast Magistrates Court heard police found her behind the wheel of a car in a hysterical state at Wellesley Avenue on May 18.

She said she wanted to kill herself by driving into a wall. O'Neill, of Loughview Gardens in Coalisland, Co Tyrone, had intended to contest the charge before entering a guilty plea yesterday.

Her lawyer told the court his client had taken alcohol while out with friends in the city, triggering depression and suicidal thinking linked to ongoing mental health issues.

He added: "Fortunately her friends intervened very shortly down the road, blocked her path and took her keys. It was only driven a number of metres on the street."

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