• Fri. Sep 23rd, 2022

A driver who used cannabis did not give a blood sample for fear of the needle

ByRandall B. Phelps

May 11, 2022

A driver refused to give a blood sample for fear of needles – but didn’t realize it was a violation.

Teesside Magistrates’ Court heard how Mark Adams admitted to smoking cannabis when he was arrested by police in Hartlepool’s Brafferton Street on April 9 this year.

Ian Martin, prosecuting, said Adams only had a provisional license and was alone in the car. He said a road test came back positive for cannabis.

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He said the defendant, 37, from Jesmond Apartments in Hartlepool, accompanied the officers to the station and when asked to give a blood sample he said he did not like the needles, which led to him being accused of failing to provide a sample. Adams pleaded guilty to the charge of failing to supply, as well as driving without a license and without insurance.

Jackson Taylor, defending, said Adams passed his theory test, but due to covid concerns he did not pass the practical test. However, he added: “He accepts that he shouldn’t have been driving that day.”

Mr Taylor said: “Officers asked him to provide a blood sample but at the time he didn’t realize he had to. He had admitted to using cannabis and did not didn’t know that not providing a sample was an offence. He had a choice, but he wasn’t really aware of the implications of that choice. He thought the choice he made was correct because he had previously admitted to driving with cannabis.

A probation officer told the court that Adams woke up that morning feeling quite stressed and had mental health issues and had smoked cannabis about an hour before using the car. She said, “He took it to help her relax and cheer her up.”

She said the defendant said his washing machine was broken, so he walked to his mother’s house with his laundry to do it there. The probation officer said: “He knows he made the wrong decision to use his mother’s car to drive home to wash up some more.

“He is remorseful for his actions and said he was glad no one was hurt in the process.”

Adams was given a 12-month community order, banned from driving for 17 months and ordered to pay £85 in costs and a victim surcharge of £95.

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