Mother banned from driving after going to pick children up from school after drinking a bottle of vodkaPolice found her sprawled across the sofa at home with the children missingThe mother-of-three was three times over the legal drink driving limitShe admitted drink driving and child cruelty and was banned from the roads
17:23 GMT, 27 December 2012
A mother who downed a bottle of vodka and drove to pick up her children from school while three times the legal limit has been banned from the roads.
A member of staff at the primary school called the police when the woman arrived reeking of alcohol.
Officers and social workers visited the mother-of-three at home later that day and found the children – aged three to seven – were missing and her sprawled across the sofa.
Over the limit: The mother admitted drink driving and child cruelty at Leamington Spa Crown Court
She told police she had not been to collect the children and said they were still at school. She later admitted driving there after drinking a small amount of vodka but insisted she did not pick them up.
Excess: The mother was three times the legal limit
The children were soon found by the authorities at a local store, supervised only by a friend, aged 10, and taken to their Coventry home before going to live with their grandmother.
Prosecutor Ian Ball said: 'A breath test
gave a reading of 110 compared to the legal alcohol limit of 35 and she
later accepted she had drunk three-quarters of a bottle of vodka that
The mother, who cannot be named to protect the identity of the children, admitted driving with excess alcohol and child cruelty and was given a community sentence with two years supervision.
It includes a condition she take part in an alcohol treatment programme as well as a 8pm to 7am curfew. She was also banned from driving for two years.
Passing sentence at Leamington Spa Crown Court, Judge Richard Griffith-Jones told her: 'You can't have another drink ever again.
'You have got to come to terms with that; it is poison to you and your children. I don't want to lecture you, but think about your children getting into your car with you in the state you were in.
'Can you imagine what could have happened'
David Rees, defending, said the mother's greatest fear was losing her children and that she would co-operate with any help she was given to tackle her alcohol problem.