Cardiff Magistrates Court
Cardiff Magistrates Court

Man arrested for drink driving after fleeing ‘sexual harassment’ at work party

Motorist was more than twice the legal limit after he left the Christmas party

A PARTY-GOER claims he was sexually harassed at a Christmas bash and fled – only to get caught drink-driving, Cardiff Magistrates’ Court heard.

David Howell left the festivities after “improper proposals” and intended to drive home in his Volkswagen Polo. But he came off the road and hit a lamppost, the court was told.

Nick Evans, prosecuting, said that Howell had initially refused to complete a roadside breathalyser test. But when he was taken to a police station, he was found to have 79 micrograms of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35 micrograms.

Howell, who defended himself, told magistrates he was of good character and had no prior convictions.

He pleaded guilty to failure to provide a specimen on the night of January 24, 2023.

The 40 year old explained that he had been distressed at the time of driving.

Howell said: “I was at a work Christmas event and things got out of hand. My manager made improper proposals and I left. I was so overwhelmed.

“I panicked and I couldn’t think.”

Howell is currently out of work and said he has brought a case of sexual harassment in the workplace against his former employer linked with events that night. The case is due to be heard by a tribunal, he said.

Howell, of Raymond Terrace, Pontypridd, currently lives with his mother with whom he moved in to take care of her following a recent cancer diagnosis.

He asked the court whether he could avoid a ban in order to continue to take his mother to hospital but was refused.

Howell received a 12-month driving ban and was ordered to complete a drink drive course.

He was also ordered to pay a fine of £80, a surcharge of £32 and court costs of £85.

The magistrate Mr James Thomas warned Howell: “If you are caught behind the wheel you will go through that big red door which goes to a very nasty place.”