Dad caught drink-driving after stag do made 'colossal error of judgement'

Nigel Hensby appeared on video link from Bury St Edmunds police investigation centre at Suffolk Magi

Sam Bokenham was banned from driving at Suffolk Magistrates' Court - Credit: Gregg Brown

A father-of-two made a "colossal error of judgement" after being caught drink-driving on the A14 while on his way home from a stag do.

Sam Bokenham has now been banned from the road after being caught at nearly three times the legal limit.

Officers immediately smelt alcohol on the 30-year-old after noticing a Volkswagen Golf stopped on the eastbound A14 at Beyton on August 8, prosecutor Jacqui Dankyi told Suffolk Magistrates' Court.

Bokenham, of Onehouse Road, Stowmarket, was described as being unsteady on his feet as he was asked to step out of the car.

He later gave a positive roadside breath test and officers also noticed damage to the front-side wheel of the vehicle.

Bokenham was arrested and provided an evidential reading of 97 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath at Bury Police Investigation Centre - nearly three times the legal limit of 35mcg in 100ml of breath. 

The court heard that Bokenham had no previous convictions. 

Most Read

Hugh Rowland, mitigating, said Bokenham was a "devoted family man" with two young children who had made a "colossal error of judgement". 

Mr Rowland said Bokenham had been to a stag do in Bury St Edmunds and had intended to stay at a friend's house following the night out. 

But during the course of the evening, Bokenham lost his friend, could not contact him and did not know where he lived because he had just moved, Mr Rowland said. 

Bokenham then slept in his car for a time, before thinking he would be fine to get behind the wheel and drive home. 

"It was then that he suffered a mechanical failure and the rest, as they say, is history," Mr Rowland said. 

Bokenham, who was supported by his wife sitting in the public gallery, pleaded guilty to drink-driving before magistrates on Wednesday. 

Magistrates disqualified Bokenham from driving for two years and fined him £1,000. 

He was also ordered to pay court costs of £105 and a victim surcharge of £100. 

Magistrates did offer Bokenham the opportunity to take a drink-drive rehabilitation course, which will reduce his ban by 24 weeks if completed within the allotted time. 

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter