Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Drunken Man Caused Pounds 5k Damage with Uncle's Van

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Drunken Man Caused Pounds 5k Damage with Uncle's Van

Article excerpt

A DRUNKEN man who accepted a challenge to fight ran up a bill for thousands of pounds.

Gary Huggins, 25, took his uncle's van at 2.20am to get to the spot for the punch-up, but his opponent failed to show.

He was driving home when he lost control of the Ford Transit, and demolished two garden walls and a pair of gates in Stockton causing pounds 5,400 of damage. Huggins, who was arrested fleeing the scene, had become a binge drinker after quitting his heroin addiction, Teesside Crown Court was told.

Residents in Commondale Avenue, Stockton, called the police when they found him trying to start up the wrecked van, said prosecutor Richard Wilson.

But Huggins was found by officers hiding near Durham Road cemetery. He had the van keys and agreed he had been drinking and the van was his uncle's.

Huggins had no previous convictions for motoring offences, but he had a record for drugs and public order matters.

Peter Wishlade, defending, said of Huggins: "That night he had no intention of driving because he had drunk several pints in town, and then returned home and had some lagers. …

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