Hartlepool motorist banned after dangerous driving left friend unconscious
A drunken woman flung a female friend from the bonnet of her car leaving her unconscious in a pub car park.
Alexandra Ryan was about to drive her car out of the car park of the Raby Arms in Hart Village when her friend got on the bonnet, Teesside Crown Court heard.
“They were in high spirits,” said Rachel Masters, prosecuting. “The friend got on the bonnet of the car as a joke, and can recall seeing Ryan in the driver’s seat laughing about it.
“Ryan drove off as her friend tried to grab things on the car to help her hang on. The next thing she recalls is waking up in North Tees Hospital.”
The court heard a security guard who witnessed the incident said Ryan revved the engine, swung to the left and braked, throwing her friend off.
Ms Masters added: “Ryan left the scene, leaving her friend unconscious in the car park. She was taken to North Tees Hospital where she was treated for a slight bleed on the brain, spending five days in hospital in all.
“Ryan was arrested later at her home.
“She told police she had been driving slowly, and had left the scene to look after the children.”
Ryan, 27, of King Oswy Drive, Hartlepool, admitted dangerous driving and driving with excess alcohol, both on September 29, last year.
The court heard she has a previous conviction for perverting the course of justice when she bought car insurance in the name of a relation, then gave police false details when they stopped her for speeding.
Andrew Teate, defending, said in mitigation: “This was a bizarre act of tomfoolery during which Ms Ryan took the unconscionable decision to move off in the car while her friend was on the bonnet.
“The driving was over a very short distance, and while no thanks to Ms Ryan, no permanent injury was caused. Ms Ryan is a hardworking woman, holding down two jobs. She also has care responsibilities for her mother.”
Judge Simon Bourne-Arton sentenced Ryan to eight months in prison, suspended for two years.
The judge told her: “This incident was the result of drink, and while it wouldn’t have happened had not your friend decided to get on the bonnet of your car, it was you who decided to drive off with her there. This was a serious offence, and you have another serious offence of perverting the course of justice on your record.”
Ryan was banned from driving for 18 months.
She must take an extended driving test if she wishes to drive after the ban expires.