Fylde: From the courts 10-03-16

Blackpool Magistrates Court
Blackpool Magistrates Court

A security systems manager was found to be over the limit after going back to work because she could not sleep.

Anna Lorenza drank three glasses of wine but still did not feel tired so she first went out shopping and later travelled to her workplace in Wesham.

Lorenza, 49, of Hill Top Close, Freckleton, pleaded guilty to driving with excess alcohol.

She was banned from the road for three years, fined £500 with £85 costs and ordered to pay £50 victims’ surcharge by Blackpool magistrates.

Jim Mowbray, prosecuting, said a member of the public contacted police to say they had seen a woman staggering around in the car park of Tesco’s, Marton, on February 17 about 11.40pm, before getting into a Peugeot.

About 2am police spotted the car and spoke to the defendant after she turned into her driveway. A breath test showed 49 microgrammes of alcohol in Lorenza’s body – 35 is the limit. She had a previous drink-driving conviction from 2011.

Steve Nikolich, defending, said on the evening of the offence Lorenza found it difficult to sleep. She drank three glasses of wine, but still could not sleep so about 10pm she went shopping.

Lorenza denied staggering about in the store car park. She had bought some clothes she was carrying without bags and it was windy, so she may have given the impression of staggering.

Returning home she still could not sleep so she went to her workplace and on the way back helped a farmer round-up a cow which had escaped. She said she had felt fully alert when driving.

• A man spent up to £1,000 a night on cocaine a court was told.

Samuel Chambers had been using the drug since the age of 16 and his huge drug habit came to light after he stole hundreds of pounds from his workplace.

Chambers, 28, of St Davids Road North, St Annes, pleaded guilty to theft from an employer.

He was sentenced to nine months drug rehabilitation, put on a 12 months community order with up to 20 days rehabilitation to be supervised by the probation service, given a 14 weeks tagged curfew from 8pm to 8am and ordered to pay £335 compensation by Blackpool magistrates.

Pam Smith, prosecuting, said Chambers had been employed as a kitchen porter at the Vinyl Groove Cafe, Queen Street, Lytham. In November last year his boss accidentally put double Chambers’ wages in his bank account.

After being alerted to the error Chambers promised to pay the £335 excess back, but he never did.

When interviewed, Chambers said he had spent the money on Christmas presents. He had aimed to repay what he owed as he was expecting a benefits payment of almost £500, but the money did not arrive.

Probation officer, Lesley Whittaker, told magistrates that when she interviewed Chambers he said he had used cocaine from being 16, but in the past months his drug use had got out of hand.

Ms Whittaker added: “He tells me he can use £700 to £1,000 of cocaine a night. He says he did not commit the offence to finance his drug use, but admits he may have paid for one bag of cocaine with the money.”

Defence lawyer, David Charnley, said Chambers had shown remorse early on, saying it was a stupid idiotic thing to do. He had expected to repay the excess wages from benefits money but his benefits were stopped.

• A couple suspended from running their pub decided to go on a Spanish break but left a cat behind in their company flat.

Natalie Abbott, 28, and Christopher Lomas went on a nine day break to Spain leaving Socks their cat in the flat above The Blossoms pub on Woodlands Road,Ansdell.

Both had been found guilty of failing to ensure the welfare of the cat by giving proper care and supervision at a previous hearing.

The couple appeared for sentence before District Judge Jeff Brailsford at Blackpool Magistrates Court.

Jonathon Fail,prosecuting for the RSPCA, said that by leaving the cat albeit it with some food and water there was still neglect.

The court heard the couple had been suspended from their jobs pending an investigation.

The couple – now living in Bury – went away and staff at the pub called in the RSPCA.Officers found the cat locked inside the flat.

When the couple returned they were questioned and both said they had made an arrangement with a friend to keep an eye on the cat but he had failed to do so.

Lomas told the court: “We were suspended and we were told not have any conversation with staff. We put the cat in the care of a so called friend – he is not a friend anymore.

“This has been a highly embarrassing situation.”

The judge said: “In a time of personal turmoil you did make arrangements for the cat, but they were not what they should have been.”

Abbott and Lomas were each fined £200 and must pay £270 costs each.