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Drink driver acted "like a wild animal"

PUBLISHED: 11:45 04 February 2011

A Lowestoft woman who crashed her car at a mini roundabout and then attacked a police officer was behaving "like a wild animal", a court has heard.

Phillipa Oates, of School Road was twice the legal alcohol limit when she lost control of her Vauxhall Tigra on the A12 near Blundeston in the early hours of January 3.

The 40-year-old mother-of-two refused to be breathalysed by police and struggled when officers tried to arrest her.

At North East Suffolk Magistrates’ Court in Lowestoft on Tuesday , Oates pleaded guilty to failing to provide a specimen of breath, resisting a police officer in the execution of his duty and possession of 6.1g of cannabis that was found inside her handbag.

Colette Griffiths, prosecuting, said Oates, who was ‘disinterested’ and ignored police officers at the roadside, became violent at the police station.

“The officer said she behaved like a wild animal, throwing herself about,” said Mrs Griffiths.

“She wouldn’t listen to anyone and was shouting over the officers.”

A breath reading at 4.25am showed Oates had 69 micrograms of alcohol in 100 milliliters of breath – the legal limit being 35mcg.

“She had drunk too much that night,” said Richard Mann, mitigating.

“This is a woman of 40 who has never been in court before. She had to flee a very violent relationship about a year ago and has increasing debts.

“She was hospitalised as a result of this incident and has had a lot of time to think. She’s used this as a watershed and has had nothing to drink since. Thank goodness it was not more serious.”

Magistrates disqualified Oates from driving for 20 months and fined her £200 for failing to provide a breath specimen, £80 for possession of drugs and £80 for resisting an officer. She was also ordered to pay £85 court costs and a £15 victim surcharge, bringing the total to £460.

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