England

Clarke Carlisle admits drink-driving offence

Clarke Carlisle Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Clarke Carlisle addressed the court bearing the facial scars from his 22 December suicide attempt

Former Premier League footballer Clarke Carlisle has admitted drinking and driving.

The 35-year-old pleaded guilty to failing to provide a sample to police on 20 December at London's Highbury Corner Magistrates' Court.

He also admitted driving otherwise than in accordance with a licence on the same date.

Police saw a Mercedes being driven in an "erratic" manner, prosecutor Zahid Hussain said.

'Mounting the pavement'

Carlisle recently revealed he was attempting to take his own life when he was hit by a lorry on the A64 near York on 22 December. The case was delayed whilst he was treated in hospital.

The court heard Carlisle's Mercedes had been spotted nearly hitting a lorry in Pentonville Road, north London.

Mr Hussain said the car was seen "swerving in the lane, to the pavement on the nearside, almost mounting the pavement" and the tyres were "grinding on the kerb".

The court was told officers smelled alcohol on Carlisle's breath but he did not blow long enough into a breathalyser to provide an adequate sample.

'Mental health issues'

He was taken to a police station but would not co-operate and asked to speak to his solicitor, Mr Hussain said.

Krystelle Wass, defending, told the court: "Two days after the incident Mr Carlisle attempted suicide, which is why matters have taken some time to come to court."

She said the star was dealing with "ongoing mental health issues".

'Bad record'

The court was told Carlisle had been involved in "excess drinking offences" in 1999 and 2011.

Deputy District Judge Margaret Dodds told Carlisle he would get credit for his early guilty plea but noted he had a "bad record" and would "inevitably" be disqualified when he is sentenced next month.

She also ordered reports be prepared after being told of his medical situation.

Carlisle was released on unconditional bail and will be sentenced on 14 May.

He played for teams including Burnley, Queens Park Rangers, Leeds United and Northampton Town and was also the chairman of the Professional Footballers' Association.

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