100mph drunk driver gets ban halved because family business is in…
A drunk driver banned for four years after speeding at 100mph has been given back his licence because the family business is in trouble.
Samuel Joseph Butt, 33, was caught in his Vauxhall Corsa on Stoneylands in Rockbeare – police had to used Captor spray after he resisted arrest and swore at officers.
He registered 91mg in 100ml of breath – the legal limit is 35mg – was banned for 48 months and given a £560 fine and 250 hours of community work in 2014.
Butt, of Priory View, Exeter, asked magistrates to hand back his driving licence early because he needs to drive to keep the family sportswear business afloat.
His father, aged 66, who has been seriously ill, and his brother, who has chronic back problems, are no longer able to drive around the South West to meet and deliver samples to clients.
Lawyer Stephen Nunn said the family run a longstanding sportswear business, employing a handful of people, which distributes throughout the region.
"This is not a 'please can I have my licence back early' – it is not that sort of application at all – it is because of the difficulties the family business is in," he added.
"They need him back on the road to take over because the rest of the family can no longer do the driving.
"He needs to take more responsibility – the fate of the company is going to rest on his shoulders.
"If the application was only for him there would be no merit to it."
Magistrates granted the extraordinary request but issued a "harsh" warning.
The chairman said: "You have done some crass things and can expect me to say harsh things about your record.
"The time passed is not that great – there are many reasons for someone like you not to be on the road ever again.
"However, it is not for the law to be extreme but to be proportionate. If ever there was a chance you could learn and apply yourself to the positive then this is it.
"If things go as you hope and your family hope then this is a judgement we can feel pleased about.
"If – heaven forfend – things do not then lots of people will suffer, no-one more than you, so please make it work."