Mother-of-three, 38, who was more than three times the drink-drive limit when stopped with four children in her car said she was drinking to cope with post-natal depression
- Kathryn McAdams was stopped at the wheel of car in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire
- She blew 116mg of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath, the legal limit is 35mg
- Four children, under age of 10, she had been looking after were unharmed
- She was given an eight-week suspended sentence and fined £100
A mother of three who was caught driving more than three times the drink-drive limit with four children in her car said she was drinking to cope with post-natal depression.
Kathryn McAdams, 38, was stopped at the wheel of Volkswagen Tiguan on the A41 in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, shortly after midnight when police were alerted by a member of the public concerned about her driving.
During a roadside test, McAdams who has three children of her own, blew 116 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath, the legal limit being 35mg.
The four children she had been looking after, all under ten and who cannot be named for legal reasons, were unharmed.
Kathryn McAdams (pictured outside court), 38, was stopped at the wheel of Volkswagen Tiguan on the A41 in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, shortly after midnight when police were alerted by a member of the public concerned about her driving
At Chester magistrates court, McAdams faced jail after she admitted drink driving and being drunk in charge of a child but was given eight weeks imprisonment suspended for 12 months after citing postnatal depression arising out of the birth of one of her own children.
Social services are now helping the family.
Alan Currums, prosecuting, said McAdams had been pulled over by police on the A41 in Elllesmere Port at 12.30am on September 4.
‘Police were contacted by a member of the public to say that the defendant was driving a Volkswagen Tiguan and that she may be under the influence of alcohol,’ Mr Currums said.
‘Officers located the vehicle on the A41. There were four children in the vehicle. She provided a positive roadside breath test and was taken to the custody suite for a further breath test. The lowest reading was 116 mg of alcohol. Police did not detect any signs of impaired driving.’
During a roadside test, McAdams who has three children of her own, blew 116 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath, the legal limit being 35mg
In mitigation Wendy Shurrock, representing McAdams, said: ‘She cannot believe she did something like that and in the probation report it was felt that she was expressing genuine remorse.
‘She felt disgusted with what she had done and did not try to minimise or justify her behaviour in any way. She has given herself a harder time than the court could give her.’
She added: ‘Drinking is clearly the issue. ‘She has mental health issues and that is what has led to the drinking. She has three children and was diagnosed with postnatal depression. She knew that she was struggling and contacted her GP to get help.
‘She also drank to deal with it. On top of the issues with mental health she had an issue with her accommodation. Her landlord had decided to sell the property where she has lived for 11 years which meant she had to move out of Chester where all of her support is.’
At Chester magistrates court, McAdams faced jail after she admitted drink driving and being drunk in charge of a child but was given eight weeks imprisonment suspended for 12 months after citing postnatal depression arising out of the birth of one of her own children
‘She has now gone back to work. That’s for financial reasons but also for her mental health. She works as an associate corporate services clerk. She had just started after this incident and has managed to keep it going even though the court case has been hanging over her head.
‘She recognises she needs help and is cooperating with every agency. She is working really hard to keep the family unit together. She has also stopped drinking since the incident. The impact of custody would be grave but there is a very realistic prospect of rehabilitation.’
McAdams was also fined £100, told to pay £239 in costs and victim surcharge and was banned from driving for 28 months. She was further ordered to complete a 90 day alcohol abstinence rehabilitation programme, will have to wear an electronic tag and undertake 30 days of rehabilitation activity with the probation service.
‘We have listened very carefully to what has been said,’ Chairman Alan Davies said. ‘We have listened to representations from your solicitor and the prosecution. We have read the probation reports and read the paperwork that you sent to us by your friend.
‘We believe that this matter has crossed the custody threshold. There were children in the car and it was a high reading. You had an opportunity to stop. Members of the public called the police. The risk both to yourself and members of the public was high.
‘You have to abstain completely from alcohol. This offence is serious and it has crossed the custody threshold but because there is a realistic prospect of rehabilitation we have held back from immediate custody.’
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