Newly-qualified driver crashed into a house

PUBLISHED: 15:33 21 August 2015

A car crashed into a house in Ladymead, Sidmouth

A car crashed into a house in Ladymead, Sidmouth


A driver from Exmouth, who passed his test seven weeks ago, has been disqualified for 14 months after crashing into a house in Sidmouth at 4am.

A district judge heard that a woman lived alone at the property in Ladymead, Woolbrook, and could not return as the damage had left the property unsafe.

Matthew Jones, 21, of Salterton Road, pleaded guilty to drink-driving at Exeter Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.

Jones was told by district judge Stephen Nicholls that he was disqualified from driving for 14 months, with the option to take a drink-driving rehabilitation course to reduce the ban.

He was issued a 12-month community order and 80 hours of unpaid work. He was also ordered to pay £295 in court costs.

The court heard that police arrested Jones on Sunday, August 2, when a test showed 46 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath - the legal limit is 35 microgrammes.

The court heard Jones’ Nissan Primera crashed through a fence and into the property.

Prosecutor Lindsey Baker said Jones had been out in Honiton with his girlfriend and her sister. He drank ‘three or four pints of Carlsberg’ and three alcopops before taking a taxi back to the sister’s flat in Sidmouth.

Mrs Baker said Jones had an argument with his girlfriend and got into his car.

Representing himself, Jones told the court he was sorry for the damage he had caused after he lost control.

The defendant, who had only passed his test on June 11, said he had ‘turned his and the victim’s life upside down’.

Jones said: “I am completely devastated that I have done it. I wish I had a remote I could turn back time for doing such a stupid thing. My thoughts go out to the lady whose property I crashed into. I had no idea of the level of damaged I caused.

“I’m more than happy to do the unpaid work.

“I have turned my life upside down and cannot even imagine for the lady who cannot be home with her personal belongings.”

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