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OAP Angus drink-driver’s Restriction of Liberty Order relaxed to allow him to walk dog

Forfar Sheriff Court.
Forfar Sheriff Court.

A drink-driving pensioner placed on an electronic tag has had his curfew time relaxed to allow him to walk his dog.

David Chalmers was almost four times the legal limit when he was caught in Arbroath earlier this year.

The 65-year-old was told by a sheriff his previous record of offending merited consideration of custody but the judge stepped back from sending him to jail and imposed a Restriction of Liberty Order requiring the accused to wear the ankle tag.

Chalmers, of Russell Square, Arbroath appeared before Sheriff Jillian Martin-Brown at Forfar where he admitted driving in Lindsay Street on May 3 with an alcohol reading of 85 microgrammes. The legal limit is 22.

Depute fiscal Jill Drummond told the court a witness had parked her car in the street just before 6pm but a short time later, heard the alarm sound on the vehicle.

She saw the accused in his car, driving forward and then stopping.

“He appeared quite frail and handed over a piece of paper, which turned out to be a till receipt,” said the fiscal.

“She suspected him to be under the influence of alcohol and called police.”

The court heard Chalmers admitted driving the car and told officers he had consumed four pints of lager earlier in the day.

He was taken to Dundee police headquarters and gave a lower breath test reading of 85 mics.

Defence solicitor Billy Rennie said: “There are health issues and he is, therefore, unable to carry out unpaid work.

“He lives alone with his dog and I have asked him about the timing of the Restriction of Liberty Order, which would normally run from 7pm to 7am.

“He takes his dog out in the evening and timing of 8pm would be more suitable, for the dog more than anything.”

Sheriff Martin Brown said: “You have previous convictions for a number of motoring offences so in light of that custody is definitely an option. I think there is an alternative available.”

Chalmers was placed on a four-month tag and banned from driving for a year.

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