Drink driving mum's trail of destruction following row with boyfriend

The case was heard at Teesside Crown Court.
The case was heard at Teesside Crown Court.

A drink driver damaged five cars and a garden wall after falling out with her boyfriend.

Lisa Wallace, who had been drinking, caused the multiple pile-up, Teesside Crown Court heard.

She tried to leave the scene of the crash, but was stopped from doing so by the owner of one of the cars she had written off.

"Ms Wallace had been drinking at home with her partner," said Chris Wood, prosecuting.

"There was an argument and he told her to leave.

"She decided to take his VW vehicle to get to her brother's house.

"As she was driving along Sinclair Road in Hartlepool she hit a lamppost, causing damage which cost the borough council £1,400 to repair."

Hitting the lamppost set off 'domino effect' which led to five cars and a garden wall being damaged, the court heard.

"As a consequence of hitting the lamppost, the VW hit a parked BMW," said Mr Wood.

"It was spun around by the impact, hitting a garden wall.

"The wall cost £800 to repair and the BMW was written off.

"What followed was a domino effect with the BMW hitting a Vauxhall Corsa, the Corsa hitting a VW Polo, and the Polo hitting another Vauxhall.

"Ms Wallace tried to leave the scene, but due to the commotion several householders came out into the street.

"The owner of the damaged BMW questioned Wallace who was arrested when police arrived.

"At the station she was found to have an alcohol level of 47 in breath, the legal limit being 35."

Wallace, 42, of Eskdale Road, Hartlepool, admitted aggravated vehicle taking, causing criminal damage in excess of £5,000, drink driving, and driving without insurance, all on August 25.

She has previous convictions for theft, and last month was convicted of driving while over the legal limit for drugs.

Damian Sabino, defending, said in mitigation: "Ms Wallace has no previous convictions for motoring offences, but she does have a subsequent one.

"Her life fell apart when she discovered her partner was cheating on her - that is what the argument was about.

"One of her children had serious health problems, and following this incident Ms Wallace became a target on social media.

"She had a breakdown, but has since sought help with her mental health problems.

"She lives with her three children, and is working on rekindling the relationship with her former partner."

Judge Sean Morris sentenced Wallace to eight months in prison, suspended for 18 months, a driving ban of 18 months, 100 hours of community work, and 20 days of rehabilitation activity.

The judge told her: "You richly deserve to go to prison, and you would have been were it not for your three children.

"If you did go to prison, the state would have to step in for the few months you would spend inside.

"What a mother-of-three is doing taking drugs and risking a prison sentence is beyond me.

"Listen to me, madam, if you offend again I will lock you up, kids or no kids.

"Cut out the drugs and look after your children."

Wallace must pass an extended driving test if she wishes to drive after the ban expires.