Blackpool: From the courts 24-11-16
Here is a round-up of some of the cases at Blackpool Magistrates Court from November 24.
Wendy Ball, 55, fraud
A woman who stole a bank card from the wife of the elderly couple she looked after was described by a senior magistrate as having committed a despicable offence.
Wendy Ball’s crime only came to light after the wife’s death and her son realised her bank card had been used.
Ball then pushed a note through the family’s letterbox pleading for forgiveness, saying she would repay and begging them not to continue with the police investigation as it would cause heartache.
Ball, a 55-year-old grandmother, of Liggard Court, Mythop Road, Lytham, pleaded guilty to fraud between February and June this year.
She was sentenced to eight weeks in prison suspended for 18 months and ordered to pay £85 costs plus £115 victims’ surcharge by Blackpool magistrates.
Presiding magistrate, David Cartain, told her: “This crime is a despicable offence perpetrated against a woman who passed away months previously and her husband who has dementia.”
Prosecutor, Malcolm Isherwood, said Ball had worked for a care company and had cared for the elderly couple overnight at times.
The wife was taken into hospital in February and died mid April.
Her son then realised her debit card had been used and a total of £124.69 spent in shops and at service stations.
CCTV showed Ball making various purchases with the card.
Allan Cobain, defending, described the case as tragic.
Ball had come across the card when she was in difficult financial circumstances.
She first used the card to buy a small amount of petrol when she had no money.
When she realised her use of the card was snowballing she put it back.
Ball had worked for a care company and looked after the couple but at the time of the offence she had given up her job and was on benefits.
She had still been allowed to do some nights at the elderly couple’s because she had done it previously.
She had been supporting her daughter who had been going through a vicious custody battle over her children.
Stephen Glover, 48, drink-driving
A head chef was almost four times over the alcohol limit when police saw him swerving around his home road without lights.
Stephen Glover had stopped drinking for six weeks before the offence but that day got a craving and drank a bottle and a quarter of vodka a court was told.
Glover, a 48-year-old father of three, of Regency Gardens, North Shore, pleaded guilty to drink-driving.
He was sentenced to a 12 months community order, told to do 125 hours unpaid work for the community, banned from the road for 32 months and ordered to pay £85 costs plus £85 victims’ surcharge.
Prosecutor, Malcolm Isherwood, said police received a tip-off about a possible drink driver on November 5.
It was after 8pm and police went to Regency Gardens where they saw Glover driving a Mitsubishi Outlander without lights.
A breath test showed 127 micrograms of alcohol in his body – 35 is the limit.
Stephen Duffy, defending, said his client had realised he was drinking too much and had started going to Alcoholic Anonymous meetings.
Glover had not had a drink for six months but then went out and bought vodka, drinking some before and after work. After committing the offence he had now upped his AA meetings to three times a week.
Harry Fryers, 19, failing to provide a sample of breath
A teenager under suspicion of drink-driving snatched his licence from a police officer’s hand and ran off.
Harry Fryers, a 19-year-old farm labourer, of Summerer Farm, Weeton Road, Poulton, pleaded guilty to failing to co-operate with a preliminary breathalyser test.
He was fined £120 with £85 costs, ordered to pay £30 victims’ surcharge and had four penalty points put on his driving licence by Blackpool magistrates.
Prosecutor, Malcolm Isherwood, said police saw Fryers on October 29, about 11pm, driving a VW Golf which had a light out in Thornton. Fryers stopped when told to on School Road.
Officers could smell alcohol on his breath and said they were going to breath test him.
Fryers said he had had a pint of shandy and a cigarette recently.
It was then explained that because he had had a drink and smoke recently they would have to wait a few minutes to administer the breath test.
Moments later Fryers snatched his licence out of an officer’s hand and ran off.
He was chased but escaped. Later that night Fryers handed himself in and apologised to the officer.
Michael Leach, defending, said his client, who had no previous convictions and a clean licence, had pleaded guilty at the first opportunity.
Mr Leach added: “In a moment of panic he ran off.
He went home and told his father he had done a stupid thing. His father then drove him immediately to the police station.”
Zoe Threlfall, 41, drink-driving
A woman seen driving round a roundabout without the headlights on was over the limit when stopped by police.
Zoe Threlfall, a 41-year-old customer service advisor, of Grasmere Road, Blackpool, pleaded guilty to driving with excess alcohol.
She was banned from the road for 12 months and fined £265 with £85 costs plus £30 victims’ surcharge by Blackpool magistrates.
Prosecutor, Malcolm Isherwood, said police saw Threlfall on November 5, at 1.40am, driving a Renault Megane without lights on North Park Drive.
A breath test showed 52 micrograms of alcohol in her body – 35 is the limit.
Steven Townley, defending, said his client, who had no previous convictions, had been babysitting for a friend and afterwards they had had a couple of drinks.
At no point did she think she was over the limit.
Threlfall, a single mother, would now have great problems getting her child to school and getting to work.
Garry Wynn, 53, possession of indecent films of children
A St Annes man was found with 70 indecent movies of children a court was told. Garry Wynn, 53, of St Albans Road, pleaded guilty to possessing the category A films, which feature the highest level of indecency in May last year. Prosecutor Malcolm Isherwood’s application that the case should go to crown court was not opposed by defence lawyer Brett Chappell. Wynn was bailed to appear for sentence on November 29 at Preston Crown Court by Blackpool magistrates.