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Drink-driver who hit cyclist faces jail

By Cornish Guardian  |  Posted: January 15, 2014

A DRINK-DRIVER who collided with a cyclist, fracturing his leg, has been warned he could be sent to prison.

Anthony Cavell was more than three times over the alcohol limit when he collided with Michael McAvoy as he pushed his bike on the A39 at St Kew Highway on Tuesday last week.

Cavell, 58, of Wellington Place, Wadebridge, was arrested and held in police custody until Thursday when he appeared at Bodmin Magistrates' Court and pleaded guilty to driving with excess alcohol in his breath.

It was his second conviction for a drink-drive offence within ten years, the court was told. Laura Searle, for the prosecution, said that police received information about the accident at around 6.30pm on January 7 and attended the scene where they found Mr McAvoy lying on the nearside verge with a fractured and dislocated left leg. He had been pushing his bike when he was struck by a Citroën Berlingo.

That vehicle – containing Cavell, his wife and daughter – was further up the road and Cavell's daughter confirmed he had been driving.

Cavell, who appeared to be under the influence of alcohol, failed a roadside breath test and was verbally aggressive to police.

Back at the police station a sample showed he had 123 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath, the limit being 35mcg. He later made full and frank admissions to the police, saying he had drunk too much alcohol.

The court was told that on November 15, 2011, Cavell had been banned from driving for 23 months after driving with 96 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. He had done a drink-drive rehabilitation course.

John Fletcher, for the defence, said that Cavell, who is retired, had had an alcohol problem for five or six years and the incident had been a wake-up call for him. He now had an appointment with Addaction.

He had shown great concern about the welfare of the injured cyclist, who was in hospital, and was very ashamed and upset about what had happened.

Chairman of the bench David Stevens told Cavell: "This was an extremely high reading – one of the highest I've seen in this court.

"It's obvious you have a serious alcohol problem affecting not only you but also your family.

"If you don't attend your Addaction appointment, custody will be the only option."

The case was adjourned until February 7 for an alcohol treatment requirement assessment and Cavell was released on unconditional bail with an interim driving ban.

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