Hartlepool drug driver stopped by police just three weeks after ban for drink driving

A disqualified driver was caught behind the wheel under the influence of drugs just three weeks after he was banned for drink driving.

Monday, 15th March 2021, 7:00 am

Callum Beswick, 31, was banned from driving by the courts after he was convicted of drink driving last July.

But just three weeks later he was stopped by police driving a Volvo C70 after smoking cannabis.

The dad of two came ‘within a hair’s breadth’ of being sent to prison when he appeared at Teesside magistrates after pleading guilty to drug driving, driving whilst disqualified, and driving without insurance on July 31 last year.

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The case was dealt with at Teesside Magistrates Court.
The case was dealt with at Teesside Magistrates Court.

Beswick was spoken to by police on Owton Manor Lane at around 8.50pm that day and admitted he smoked cannabis.

Prosecutor Alan Davison said: “A saliva sample was positive for cannabis. Checks on the police computer system revealed he was disqualified.

"The disqualification was three weeks before this incident.”

A further blood sample showed he was over the legal limit for cannabis.

Colin Sleeman, defending, explained that at the time Beswick was working at a garage and he went with a friend to look at a vehicle they wished to buy to sell on.

After developing a problem with its gear box he managed to crawl around the corner to safety.

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Mr Sleeman said Beswick came from a close law abiding family and he is currently the main carer for his and his partner’s two young children.

References spoke of him as a decent and caring man.

Mr Sleeman said the car was only driven for a short distance adding: “There was no associated bad driving of the vehicle.”

But District Judge Timothy Capstick said: “He shouldn’t have driven at all, particularly when he’s under the influence of cannabis.”

Addresing Beswick, of Haswell Avenue, Hartlepool, he added: “I treat the explanation as to why you were driving with a great deal of scepticism.

“I think you just choose to drive when you want to.”

He sentenced Beswick to 18 weeks prison suspended for 18 months and banned him from driving for four years.

He must also do 160 hours community service and pay £213 in costs and surcharges.

District Judge Capstick added: “You have come within a hair’s breadth of going to custody today.”

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