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Cairan just to wind you up a little more I found thisa very interesting story but if you come upon a similar incident I suggest you do one of two things:- Either stay with the guy until the Garda arrive to make sure he does, or most importantly make sure you leave the keys tucked inside his pocket as without them he will not be prosecuted and you are unwittingly doing him a great favour.

There are two quite distinct seperate drink driving whilst unfit offences. 1. Driving a m/vehicle. 2. Being in charge of a m/vehicle whilst unfit.

As your motorist was stationary asleep in his vehicle he is deemed in law to be 'in charge' of the vehicle unless the Garda has conclusive visual proof that he drove there? A statutory defence to the offence of being 'In Charge' is the inability to drive the vehicle any further. Once you threw the keys away you gave the motorist his defence. Without the keys he would not have been prosecuted. Daft I know but that's the law as it stands. Another odd thing is that if I park my car and walk away from it I am deemed in law to remain incharge of it all the time I retain possession of the ignition key. No keys and I have relinguished all charge off the vehicle whether mine or not. For 29yrs catching drink drivers was my speciality and I held the record for the highest detection rate in the North by a single officer of nine arrests in 2 days in 1995 over the NW200 weekend when I was on a bike. Unless you can prove he was driving, a motorist found drunk in a stationary car without keys will get off.Example:- I go out tonight and get totally pissed in a bar. I drive the car until it runs out of fuel and stops. Unless someone comes to court and proves I was actually driving I will get off when the police come along. This is because there is now no likelyhood of me driving the vehiclewhen the garda come along because it is out of gas.The law sometimes is an ass and I always felt the cards where firmly stacked in the favour of the drunk.When I found a drunk lying in a car I had to prove conclusive in court that he had the keys on him and they started the vehicle which was capable of being driven. ;)
 
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