A drug driver was caught by police when he knocked down a pedestrian in Swindon.
At Swindon Magistrates’ Court, 28-year-old George Saunders pleaded guilty to driving whilst under the influence of ketamine and benzoylecgonine (a metabolite of cocaine).
Prosecutor Keith Ballinger said the defendant, of Morecombe Way, Fairford, was driving his BMW when hit a person on Cirencester Way, near Transfer Bridges, on 21 October last year.
He waited at a red traffic light as a group of teenagers crossed, but when the lights turned green and he moved forward, he collided with a pedestrian who legged it across the road.
Witnesses corroborated his version of events, confirming he wouldn’t have seen the person in enough time to react – regardless of the level of drugs in his system.
The pedestrian was injured, and emergency services were called to the scene. Saunders remained at the incident and cooperated with the police.
Failing a roadside drug swipe for cocaine, he was arrested. In custody, he provided a blood sample which showed he was five times over the drug drive limit for ketamine and twice over the benzoylecgonine limit.
Charlotte Frizzell, defending, said her client did not have time to stop and the collision was not his fault.
She said he felt fine to drive and didn’t think he would have drugs in his system from when he took drugs on a night out a few days prior.
Ms Frizzell said the conviction will “significantly affect his work” as Saunders works as a self-employed groundworker, working for firms across the country.
He was fined £480, and told to pay prosecution costs of £85 and a surcharge of £48. He was also banned from driving for 18 months.
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