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Driver continued journey in wrecked car after killing man

Alison Bowen drove her car in this state for 5 miles Credit: Sussex Police

A drink driver who knocked down and killed a cyclist and then drove for five miles in a wrecked car has been jailed for seven years.

Alison Bowen hit 50-year-old Paul Novak in her Fiat Punto on the A21 at Robertsbridge last November.

She struck him with such force that the windscreen shattered and the front of her car caved in.

She then drove off, leaving Mr Novak on the road. He died at the scene.

Bowen continued to drive her smashed up car until she crashed off the road at Marley Lane in Battle.

When she was found, she could not explain what had happened and thought she had hit a badger.

When she was breathalysed, she was found to be twice over the drink drive limit.

Crash investigators were able to prove that she had been driving partially on the grass verge when she hit Mr Novak and that cuts on her knuckles were from the splintered glass from her windscreen after she hit him.

She has now been jailed for 7 years and banned from driving for 2, and will have to under go extended tests before she can drive again.

Ann Novak, Mr Novak's mother said, "My only son Paul had his life snuffed out in seconds through no fault of his own.

"No sentence will ever be enough to take away the pain I feel that I will not be able to spend the rest of my life with him."

Sergeant Dan Pitcher said, "Paul Novak was the innocent victim of a woman who selfishly decided to drink and then drive home.

"He had no chance to avoid Bowen or to do anything that could have saved him from her.

"This horrific case shows exactly why we cannot and will not tolerate any drink or drug driving in Sussex."

240 people arrested for drink driving in crack down

A summer campaign launched by Thames Valley Police to crack down on drink driving saw 240 people arrested.

During the month of June, hundreds were arrested for driving with excess alcohol.

Of those arrested, 129 have been charged, 71 have been bailed and 40 released with no further action.

There was a slight decrease of men arrested, with 197 arrested this year compared with 200 last year but there was an increase of 10% in arrests of women.

Chief Superintendent Lucy Hutson said:

Each drink driver arrested and taken off the road helps to make our roads safer and prevents potential death or serious injury. Each death and serious injury we prevent stops pain and devastation to an even wider circle of family and friends.”

– Chief Superintendent Lucy Hutson, Thames Valley Police


Kent Police: "Drink-driving is selfish"

In June and July 2012, when the last major football tournament was held, Kent Police arrested 361 people for drink-driving and other related offences. Already, since this month's crackdown began on June 1, we've arrested more than 60 people. Our warning applies not only to those returning home at the end of the night after watching World Cup games in pubs and bars but equally anyone planning a get-together away from the TV. Drink-driving is selfish, unnecessary and dangerous to other innocent road users as well as yourself."

– Kent Police Sergeant Hannah Brown from the Roads Policing Unit

Kent's Road Safety Team launches its Summer drink-driving campaign

With the World Cup Finals kicking off in Brazil this week, Kent County Council and Kent Police are appealing to drivers not to drink and drive.

KCC's Road Safety Team is working with pubs and clubs across Kent to provide ‘red card' beer mats, posters and other materials while the campaign will also be promoted across Kent radio and digital media.

Steve Horton, Kent County Council's road safety team leader said, "Evenings spent watching the games and drinking could lead to disaster. We want people to enjoy themselves and to be sensible; to think tactically by leaving the car at home or bring on the substitute, non-drinking designated driver."

Woman faked panic attacks to avoid road ban

A Kent woman who faked panic attacks to stop police testing her for drink-driving has been given a driving ban of 20 months.

Laura Leslie repeatedly claimed she needed medical help and refused to answer questions after being arrested in Brighton.

The 49-year-old from Hythe was spotted driving in Brighton at 6.15am on the 12th October without her lights on.

Witnesses saw the car veering across the road, mounting the verb and almost hitting a pole before officers intercepted.

When questioned, Leslie claimed to be having a panic attack so an ambulance was called and she was taken to Royal Sussex County Hospital.

She was charged with failing to provide a specimen for analysis, banned from driving for 20 months and made to pay £310.

Leslie tried everything to get off the hook including forcing us to waste the time of doctors and nurses as we tried to test her for drink-driving. She even pleaded not guilty in court so wasted both our and her time trying to fight a charge that she knew she was guilty of. Now she's got not only a ban from driving but also a big legal bill to pay."

– PC Laura Stanley

Drivers due in court following drink drive crackdown

Another seven motorists are to appear in court after being charged with offences as part of Sussex Police's Christmas drink-drive crackdown.

Each of the defendants was arrested in December and questioned but was charged with driving offences after answering their bail.

A total of 145 people have now been charged with offences as part of the December campaign. 7 drivers are still on bail.


More drivers breath tested in Kent over Christmas

Kent Police says more drivers were breath tested during their latest Christmas anti drink and drug driving campaign but fewer failed them compared to the year before.

More drivers have been stopped for breath testing in Kent Credit: ITV Meridian

334 motorists were tested in December and 156 were over the limit. That compares to Christmas 2012 when 277 drivers were tested and 178 failed.

Unusual arrest at the end of drink drive campaign...!

The end of the annual Christmas drink and drug impaired driving campaign saw nearly 300 people arrested.

Thames Valley Police arrested 281 people on suspicion of drink driving.

The results also showed that there has been a 6% increase in men being arrested compared with the same period last year.

But the end of the year saw a rather unusual arrest.

Han Gi Cheong, aged 60, from Korea, was arrested after officers boarded a vessel berthed at Southampton Docks on the evening of December 27, 2013.

Mr Cheong is the captain of a 68,000 tonnes cargo vessel which had berthed at the docks that evening on arrival from Antwerp.

He was charged with failing to provide a preliminary breath test when required to do so.

Hampshire drink-driving figures

Hampshire Police are warning the public not to take the risk of drink driving as the new year approaches.

So far, 194 people have been arrested on suspicion of drink-driving this December.

167 are these are men and 29 are women.

Police have arrested 194 people on suspicion of drink-driving this month Credit: PA Wire

The oldest is 82 and the youngest is 17.

Southampton - 35

Portsmouth - 26

East Hants and Winchester - 23

Fareham and Gosport - 20

Hart and Rushmoor - 17

Havant - 14

Andover - 14

Basingstoke and Deane - 13

Eastleigh and Romsey - 12

Isle of Wight - 12

New Forest - 9

Other - 1

48 charged after drink drive campaign

48 people have been charged with drink and drive-related offences during Dorset Police's annual campaign.

This year anyone charged with a drink or drug driving-related offence during the campaign will have their name and court appearance details released to the media.

Dorset Police is reminding motorists there will be increased patrols and road side checks throughout the Christmas and New Year period.

It’s really disappointing that so many people continue to not only put their own lives at risk, but also the lives of other innocent road users.I have seen far too many lives lost on the roads due to drink driving. Research has shown that even one drink can impair the ability to drive so please don’t get behind the wheel after drinking any alcohol at all.Inspector Butler is also urging people to plan ahead over New Year and take simple steps such as booking a taxi, having a designated driver or arranging overnight accommodation."

– Inspector Matt Butler, of Dorset Police’s Traffic Unit
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