'Serial' drink driver who was three times over the alcohol limit jailed

Andrius Bartninkas was jailed for drink driving in Haverhill

Andrius Bartninkas was jailed for drink driving in Haverhill - Credit: Suffolk police

A 33-year-old Haverhill man who was more than three times over the alcohol limit when he got behind the wheel of his car has been jailed.

Andrius Bartninkas was stopped in his Volkswagen Golf at about 1.30am last Saturday after officers on patrol spotted him driving erratically.

The officers drove behind the vehicle and then signalled for the driver to stop in Withersfield Road, which he initially failed to do, before he pulled over in Eastern Avenue — almost colliding with a parked vehicle in the process.

Bartninkas failed a roadside breath test, with further checks revealing he was a disqualified driver and had no insurance.

The Volkswagen also did not have a valid MOT test certificate. 

Bartninkas was arrested and taken to Bury St Edmunds police investigation centre, where he provided a sample of 111 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath — the legal limit being 35 mcg.

He appeared before Suffolk Magistrates' Court in Ipswich on Monday, which heard that he had two previous convictions for drink driving and was banned from the roads for four years in February last year.

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Bartninkas, of Ash Grove in Haverhill, admitted driving with excess alcohol, driving whilst disqualified, driving without insurance and driving without a valid MOT test certificate. 

He was sentenced to 20 weeks in prison, given a five-year driving ban and ordered to pay £233 in costs.

Inspector Gary Miller, of the Roads and Armed Policing Team at Suffolk police, said: "Andrius Bartninkas can now be described as a serial drink-driver, having been convicted for a third time. 

"I find it staggering that someone can be so reckless once – let alone on three occasions – and to drive while more than three times the limit is not only extremely idiotic and dangerous, it is a serious risk to life.

"The court was left with no option but to send him to prison. 

"This was a great piece of proactive police work by the officers who stopped Bartninkas and they very likely prevented him from causing a collision. People should not think that just because it is the middle of the night they can get away with this sort of behaviour, because our officers are around 24/7. 

"We are almost half-way through the Christmas drink and drug-driving campaign and I am extremely disappointed to find people continuing to take these unnecessary risks.

"Our message is clear, it is not worth it and there is no excuse."