Monday 17 June 2019
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Drunk driver calls police... on herself

Drunk driver calls police... on herself

Friday 11 January 2019

Drunk driver calls police... on herself

A UK medical professional has been given four weeks behind bars after Guernsey Police caught her driving while three and a half times the drink drive limit.

But she wasn't caught after a crash or during a spot check - she had actually called the police herself because she thought she was being followed by another car.

Rachael Bamber, 34, was visiting Guernsey on the 3 September 2018 for a business trip, when she hired a Fiat 500. She had had a small bottle of wine on the flight over, and then met a friend at a pub in Town. After drinking two thirds of a 'large glass of wine', she went to meet a different friend at another pub, where she drunk another half of a 'large glass of wine'. Advocate Catherine Fooks, speaking on behalf of Bamber, said her client was conscious of drink driving when she was with her friends, and was sure she had not drunk the entire glasses.

She said it was clear her client did not think she was drunk or she would have never called the police out.

After having those drinks, Bamber started to drive to where she was staying, but got lost on the way. A member of the public saw her driving in an abnormal manner, and called Guernsey Police, but Bamber herself had also called 999, suspicious that a car was following her. 

When the police arrived to find her pulled over, they questioned whether she had been drinking, and she admitted she had been. When they breathalysed her she was over the limit by three and a half times.

les Nicolles prison

Bamber will now spend four weeks in prison, despite not being a resident of the island. Her Advocate argued a community service order might suit this situation because it would be better if she could get straight back to work in the medical world. 

Advocate Fooks told the court that her client was "overcome by remorse" for what she had done, and as a well respected medical professional with 13 years of clinical experience, she had been humiliated and had to resign from her job or face an internal investigation.

Bamber had also been in extreme pain at the time of the incident because of a health issue she was facing, which was making it hard for her to sleep - but it was made clear she accepted all of these consequences were of her own doing. 

In sentencing, Judge Graeme McKerrell accepted that Bamber was not likely to ever reoffend and was of previous good character, but also said that a reading this high could not be dealt with by any other way than a custodial sentence. 

Bamber will be in prison in Guernsey for four weeks, and was banned from driving on the island for three years. 

Pictured: Guernsey's court building. 

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