Mum cleared of drink driving after claiming she necked vodka to calm down

A mum-of-four has been cleared of drink driving after claiming she downed two pints of vodka following a car crash, in order to "calm down".

Kelsey Ridings, 26, had her four children in the back of her Mercedes when she crashed head-on to a Peugeot 308 which had a pregnant woman on board.

After offering the other driver £1,000 to not exchange insurance details, she sped away from the scene before police arrived, Manchester Evening News reports.

Officers traced her to her home in Mottram, Greater Manchester, where a breath test showed she was almost four times over the legal alcohol limit.

But she was cleared at a hearing of drink driving after claiming she had consumed the two pints in just 15 minutes at the home of her best friend Paige Azad immediately after the crash.

Azad, 24, who poured her the drinks said it was ''a lot of vodka and a bit of coke'' and claimed she would never have let her friend drive as she was godmother to her children.

JPs described Ridings' account as "often confused and misleading" and Miss Azad's evidence as "totally incredible", but ruled prosecutors had not proved its case against her.

The incident occurred at 5pm on May 6 as Ridings, who works as an accountant, was returning home from a shop she was thinking of renting as a beauty salon.

The other driver, Carl Kidd, was taking his heavily pregnant partner to see his parents at the time.

He told the hearing: ''She was well over on my side of the road and she was coming at speed. I steered away to avoid a head on collision but she caught the back end of my car.

''I made sure my partner was okay then went over to confront the other driver. She then opened the door and there were three kids in the back and a young girl in the passenger seat, all children.

"I said: 'look what you have done?' and asked for her insurance details but she offered me £1,000 to not go through the insurance.

''I said there wasn’t a chance of that because the chassis was bent over where she had hit me and we went over it back and forth.

"I asked her again for her insurance details and eventually she gave them, got into her car and sped off.

To stay up to date with all the latest news, make sure you sign up to one of our newsletters here.

“She appeared to be intoxicated and was slurring her words and was unsteady on her feet. I think she was trying to overpower me.

"I did not smell any alcohol but she was slurring her words. I have been around drunk people in my life and she did not appear to be sober. She appeared drunk to me and my partner agreed she didn’t seem right.''

The court heard police arrived at Ridings' home at 6:11pm where she was said to have an ''elevating demeanour.''

After blowing almost four times the limit, she took a second test which showed she had 82mg in breath.

Ridings told the hearing: ''I was coming round a bend and was going down the hill but as I accelerated the car skidded and I clipped the other car. I did say: 'can we not go with insurance' as I had £1000 in savings which I could use.

"But he said it would be more than that and something needed to happen that day. I felt uncomfortable. It was only minor damage – just a scrape. There was more damage to my car. I had not had any alcohol by that stage.

“I drove off because other cars were beeping and he was aggressive and the kids were screaming. We were not getting anywhere. I went to Paige’s house and there I was trying to calm down and I asked her to get me a drink.

"I just needed to calm my nerves and I stood outside her house having a glass of vodka which more or less neat and I then necked it then had another one whilst I was getting the kids out of my car and into my friend's van.''

Breaking down in tears she added: “I just feel like a bad mum drinking. I was there 15-20 minutes and it was long enough to have two drinks. I just panicked. They were incredibly strong drinks. I had not had a drink before it.''

Source: Read Full Article