A mother-of-three has been banned from driving after she was caught at the wheel almost three times over the legal drink-drive limit – with FIVE children in her car.
Reckless Emma Hartley, 35, downed pints of cider before driving her children aged 11, seven and five, and two of her parents’ neighbours’ children back from a fun day out.
Hartley took the children roller skating at the Paradise Centre in Ely, Cambs., on June 4 and started drinking in a pub while she waited for them to finish.
Horrified CCTV operators alerted police after they spotted drunken Hartley leave the pub and drive away in her Vauxhall Zafira with the five children.
Police tracked her car and a breath test showed she was almost three times over the drink-drive limit.
Hartley, from Surrey Quays, East London, was given a 20-month driving ban at Ely Magistrates’ Court after she pleaded guilty to driving while intoxicated.
Laura Mardell, prosecuting, said: ”Officers caught up with the vehicle, which was Miss Hartley’s parents’ Vauxhall Zafira, outside the Spar shop in Ely’s High Street.
”It was parked outside and when she came out of the shop, they confronted her.
”They could see she was flushed in the face and she smelt strongly of alcohol. There were five children in the car at the time.”
Tests showed she had 88 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35 micrograms.
Hartley, who was unrepresented in court, told magistrates she was ”absolutely mortified” by her actions.
She said: ”I was visiting my parents in Soham during half term and decided to take my children and two of their neighbours’ children skating in Ely.
”I just popped over to the pub while they were skating and had two pints of cider.
”I don’t usually drink because I can’t afford to but I do tend to have one or two when I’m visiting my parents.
”I realised the moment that I got behind the wheel to come home that the alcohol had hit me so I drove round to the Spar shop to get some credit.
”I wanted to phone my parents to tell them that I wasn’t fit to drive back but on my way out the police stopped me. I have let so many people down.”
Hartley was fined £200 and ordered to pay £40 court costs and a £15 victim surcharge.