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Drunk driver was chased by citizen

May 29th, 2024 6:15 PM

By Southern Star Team

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A DRUNK driver who was chased and stopped by a member of the public has been convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol.

Prosecuting, Sergeant Trish O’Sullivan told Macroom District Court that gardaí received a report from a member of the public on April 23, 2024 of a suspected incident of drink driving at Raleigh South, near Macroom.

The complainant told gardaí that they were driving in the area at about 7.10pm when a car coming in the opposite direction veered across the road and forced them to take evasive action by driving up onto a ditch to avoid a collision.

The member of the public turned their car around and followed the vehicle which was ‘veering all over the road’ and driving erratically.

The complainant flashed their lights and beeped their horn at the car and it eventually pulled over.

When they approached the car they believed that the driver was drunk and they took the keys from the ignition and called gardaí.

Sgt O’Sullivan said that when gardaí arrived it was observed that the driver of the car, Sergiy Chebanenko, 32, of Graigue, Inchigeela, Macroom, appeared to be under the influence.

Mr Chebanenko was arrested and taken to Macroom Garda Station where a blood alcohol test confirmed a reading of 117mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood, more than double the limit.

Mr Chebanenko, originally from Ukraine represented himself in court, and was assisted by an interpreter.

He pleaded guilty to the single charge of drink driving under Section 5 of the Road Traffic Act.

He told the court that he had two children and lived near Macroom with his partner and children and worked full-time in a local hotel as a handyman and on security.

The court heard that Mr Chebanenko had no previous convictions. Judge William Aylmer convicted Mr Chebanenko and disqualified him from driving for three years with effect from October 1st, 2024.

He said he would not fine Mr Chebanenko as he had no previous convictions.

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