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Drink driver jailed

Drink driver jailed

Monday 01 June 2020

Drink driver jailed

A drink driver who was five times the legal limit has been jailed for six months after being reported to police by another motorist.

46-year-old Helene Le Vallee was jailed on Friday after being told her reading was believed to be the highest ever seen by one of Guernsey's courts.

She was arrested on 22 December 2019 shortly before 15:00.

Earlier she had hit another car on Rue Jamouneau and had stopped to give the other driver her details. That driver, concerned about her driving called Guernsey Police who sent officers to investigate. 

They followed her along Elizabeth Avenue where she was seen to mount the pavement, and almost hit some pedestrians before she was stopped.

An aggravating fact in the case against Le Vallee was the fact she had two teenage passengers in the car with her.

Her roadside breath test confirmed Le Vallee was over the limit, with a reading of 176mcg per 100ml of breath. The legal limit is 35.

Le Vallee's own defence advocate said this was a "shockingly high reading".

Advocate Sam Maindonald also said that Le Vallee had experienced a number of difficult times in her life, and had used alcohol to cope. After this incident, she had lost everything but has accepted she needs help and continues to make progress and has not drunk any alcohol since she was stopped by the police that afternoon.

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Pictured: Le Vallee has been jailed for six months and banned from driving for five years. 

In sentencing her, Judge Gary Perry told Le Vallee that the Royal Court had no choice but to send her to prison because her reading was the highest the court had had to deal with that anyone could remember.

It was he said, "a level we find quite frankly astonishing". 

"Of its type, this is the most serious case this court has had to deal with," he added citing the level of intoxication, the collision and the young passengers in the car with Le Vallee.

"We are astounded you even considered driving, the state you were in," he said. "You should be ashamed of yourself."

Le Vallee's sentence was cut from 10 months to six because of a number of mitigating factors including her early guilty plea, previous good character and the amount of progress she has made in dealing with her alcohol problems since her arrest.

Pictured top: Le Vallee was jailed for six months by the Royal Court and banned from driving for five years. 

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