Booze-fuelled motorist knocked an elderly man down and demolished a sign

Drink-driving.
Drink-driving.

A boozed-up valet who had never driven took a customer’s car to buy alcohol before mounting a pavement, knocking down a 69-year-old man and crashing into a sign.

Chesterfield magistrates’ court heard on Tuesday, June 12, how Constantin Marica, 31, of Catherine Street, Chesterfield, collided into the elderly man on Hawksley Avenue, Chesterfield, throwing him over the bonnet of the Vauxhall Insignia car.

Chesterfield magistrates' court.

Chesterfield magistrates' court.

Prosecuting solicitor Mark Fielding said: “He was working in a car valeting position. The vehicle was left there to be valeted. The defendant was drunk and later provided a specimen which showed he was just about twice the limit.

“He took the vehicle to drive to buy more alcohol and it was the first time he had driven a motor car.

“And while driving he mounted the pavement and knocked into a 69-year-old man from behind who went over the bonnet and then he smashed into a road sign demolishing it.

“One is spoiled for choice in terms of aggravating features.”

Marica, who is a Romanian national, pleaded guilty to taking a vehicle without the consent of the owner and driving it dangerously on May 22.

He also admitted exceeding the alcohol drink-drive limit and admitted driving without insurance and without a licence.

The court heard that Marica registered 65 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath, when the legal limit is 35 microgrammes.

Defence solicitor Julie Page said: “It is conceded there are aggravating features to this matter.

“But on the other side of the coin we have a man of previous good character who has made full admissions in an interview and then pleaded guilty at the first opportunity.

“He has expressed genuine remorse for his actions.”

Magistrates felt the case was so serious it went beyond their sentencing powers so they committed the matter to Derby Crown Court for a further hearing on July 3.

However, they imposed a six-month interim disqualification from driving.

Marica was released on unconditional bail until the next hearing.