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Intoxicated male urinated against shop wall then got into his car and settled down for a sleep

Defence said his client had 'been at a friend's house the night before and had been drinking most of the night' and was in the car intending to sleep it off

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A Newry man who urinated on a shop wall before retiring to his car to sleep off the effects of alcohol has been handed 10 penalty points for being in charge.

Court heard that a sample of the 44-year-old’s breath taken in custody gave a reading of 118mg of alcohol in 100ml of breath – over three times the legal drink drive limit.

Coleman Rowntree, of Drumalane Park, had pleas of guilty entered on his behalf to indecent behaviour and in charge with excess alcohol at the city’s Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday.

Prosecution outlined that on March 21, at 11am, police received a report from a member of the public regarding a driver suspected of being under the influence.

Officers arrived to find the defendant asleep in a vehicle at the car park of Costcutter on the Bettyshill Road in Newry.

They roused Rowntree from his slumber and a preliminary breath test was conducted resulting in a fail.

Police later checked CCTV of the area, which showed the defendant urinating on the shop wall of Costcutter before returning to his car and going to sleep.

An evidential sample of Rowntree’s breath was also taken which gave a reading of 118mg of alcohol in 100ml of breath – over three times the legal drink drive limit.

Defence solicitor Padraig Tiernan stated: “Mr Rowntree instructs that he had been at a friend’s house the night before and had been drinking most of the night.

“He had parked his car at the shops across the road. He intended to sleep it off and was doing so when police came to his vehicle.”

He informed the court that the defendant did have a previous entry on his record for failing to provide a specimen of breath.

District Judge Eamonn King handed Rowntree 10 penalty points and ordered that he pay a fine of £310, along with the offender’s levy of £15.

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