9:20am Wednesday 26th February 2014
A WOMAN has been banned from driving and forced to undertake more than 100 hours of unpaid work after she was involved in a drunken police chase, despite already totting up 11 points on her licence.
Lindsey Bidgway was charged with dangerous driving and driving under the influence of alcohol.
Newport Crown court heard how in the early hours of January 12, 2014, the 25-year-old mother was driving her vehicle in the Blackwood area. She grabbed the attention of police after swerving toward a police car, prompting the officer to attempt to pull her over.
Bidgway continued to drive and the police car followed. During this pursuit, the court heard how Bidgway drove dangerously, jumping a red light, driving on the wrong side of the road and ignoring give-way signs.
Due to this driving and fearing for the safety of other road users, the police officer decided to cease the pursuit.
The officer found Bidgway soon after, leaving her car shoeless after parking it up. Initially she ran from police but soon stopped, surrendering to the officer.
The court heard how in interview, she had said she panicked. She was found to have 60mcg of alcohol in 100mcg breath test, almost twice the legal limit of 35mcg.
At the time of the incident, Bidgway had 11 points on her licence. A week before her appearance in court, she had received another three points for speeding, resulting in mandatory disqualification.
The court heard how the 25-year-old had previously worked in a solicitor's firm and an estate agent, but was now responsible for caring for her five-month-old baby.
On sentencing, Judge Thomas Crowther QC said: “It’s plain you had no conception of what you were doing or the risk you presented.”
She was sentenced to six months for dangerous driving and a further one month concurrent sentence for drink driving. This sentence will be suspended for two years.
Bidgway of St Cattwg's Avenue, Gelligaer, is also required to carry out 120 hours of unpaid work and will be disqualified from driving for 15 months, after which she will have to take the extended retest.
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