Mechanic caught with cannabis in car is fined
A Co Armagh mechanic has received 10 points on his licence after cannabis was found in a car in Banbridge.
Kristopher Dunlop (25) of Castle Rise, Tandragee, pleaded guilty to possession of class B drugs and being in charge of a vehicle with excess alcohol on May 4.
The motor enthusiast with a social media interest in car 'donuts' spinning appeared in Newry Magistrates Court yesterday.
The court heard that a PSNI patrol observed a stationary VW Passat at Commercial Road in Banbridge at approximately 12.25am.
The headlights of the vehicle were on and an amount of smoke was visible coming from under the vehicle, with a smell of rubber in the air, "as if the car had been spinning".
A strong smell of cannabis and alcohol was detected coming from the Passat.
The defendant, who was identified as the driver, exited the car and attempted to run away from police.
However, he was so drunk he fell just 20 yards away and was arrested.
Dunlop attempted to explain away the smoke around his VW by by claiming that the "brakes are f*****".
Police searched the vehicle and found an amount of cannabis on the driver's seat.
When questioned on the drugs, Dunlop said that he "smoked a bit of blow for ADHD".
A breath test recorded 72mgs of alcohol in 100mls of breath, over twice the legal limit.
The defendant during interview reacted to the alcohol reading stating: "I'm not going to lie to you: when you're drunk, you're drunk."
The defence said its client had always been cooperative with police and had not offered "any cheeky answers".
"He is lucky that the police did not arrive some moments earlier, and I will not put it any higher than that," said a defence lawyer.
District Judge Eamonn King alluded to character references on Dunlop's behalf.
"If I can give you any advice, you should stay away from cannabis," said Mr King.
Dunlop was further fined a total of £350, as well as an offender's levy, and a destruction order was placed on the drugs.