CCTV footage shows Barnstaple man's erratic drink driving
A CCTV operator who spotted a man leaving a pub and driving home erratically on a Sunday morning called the police and landed the man a 20-month driving ban.
Ross William Toleman, 29, of 8 Lundy Close, Gorwell, Barnstaple, pleaded guilty to drink-driving and driving without due care and attention when he appeared at North Devon Magistrates' Court on Friday.
He was caught on camera leaving The Panniers pub on Queen Street at 11am on remembrance Sunday last year and getting into his red Ford Focus.
Mark Haddow, for the prosecution, told magistrates how the CCTV operator then tracked Toleman as he drove down Taw Vale, took a left hand bend at high speed, veered onto the wrong side of the road and swerved to avoid an oncoming car.
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Having seen that the camera operator called the police, who headed to Toleman's house.
They found his wife in the passenger seat of his car and asked where Toleman was. She told them and said he had been driving.
When they knocked on the door of his house he answered the door half-dressed and said he had just got out of bed.
Police arrested Toleman and took him to Barnstaple police station, where he was breathalysed and blew a reading of 72 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The limit is 35.
Officers showed him the CCTV footage, which also showed him driving to the pub.
"It shows him coming round the bend at the top of Boutport Street too quickly," before he wildly pulls into a parking space," said Mr Haddow. "A real meal was made of parking."
Toleman admitted he had been driving the car and said he had no recollection of the episode, as he had been "totally smashed".
Toleman, who was convicted of drink-driving as an 18-year-old, said he was sorry for his actions.
"I'd like to apologise, although that doesn't change what happened," he said.
"I regret it. I've pleaded guilty and there's not a lot else to say.
"I'm a father and husband and this is very embarrassing."
As well as handing Toleman the driving ban presiding magistrate Judith Kauntze fined him £250 and ordered him to pay costs of £85 and a victim surcharge of £25.