Man had been trying to get a lift home

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When police noticed a man unsteady on his feet in a car park they saw him get into the driver’s side of a vehicle.

Stephen Andrew James Hanlon (24), Meadow Bank, Seapatrick, Banbridge, admitted being in charge of a vehicle with excess alcohol in breath on September 17 this year.

He was fined £250 and banned from driving for five months. Hanlon also admitted failing to provide a specimen of breath and was fined £150 with a concurrent five month disqualification.

He was also ordered to pay a £15 offender’s levy.

Banbridge Magistrates Court heard last Thursday that a police mobile patrol in the car park at Harry’s Bar saw a man who was unsteady on his feet.

They saw him walk towards a car, take car keys out of his pocket and get into the driver’s seat.

Hanlon, who was heavily intoxicated, was arrested and later he refused to provide a sample of breath.

A solicitor representing the defendant said he had been trying to get a lift home and had called his sister to pick him up.

He added that there was no likelihood of him driving.

The solicitor said Hanlon tried to provide a sample of breath but failed to do so and asked the court to consider a shorter period of disqualification.