Clarke Carlisle: Former footballer given driving ban

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Media captionClarke Carlisle: ''I look forward to repaying my debt to society''

Former Premier League footballer Clarke Carlisle has been banned from driving for three years after he admitted drinking and driving.

The 35-year-old's Mercedes was stopped by police after it almost hit a lorry in north London on 20 December.

Carlisle admitted failing to provide a sample to police and driving otherwise than in accordance with a licence.

He was also ordered to carry out 150 hours' unpaid work at Highbury Corner Magistrates' Court.

District judge Susan Williams also ordered him to pay £145 in costs and charges.

'Mounting the pavement'

She said that, although Carlisle had made a "positive contribution" to others through football, she had to sentence him for the risk his "erratic" driving had created.

"If you are not in control of your vehicle in a road in central London you represent a danger to people," she said.

At a hearing in March, the court heard Carlisle's Mercedes had been spotted "swerving" and "almost mounting the pavement" in Pentonville Road.

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Carlisle admitted the charges at a hearing in March

After his arrest, the court heard, he refused to give a breath sample and demanded to speak to his solicitor.

Lisa Judge, defending, said he allowed the matter to "escalate out of all control" and "unfortunately" believed he had the right to see a lawyer, instead of being breathalysed.

'Extremely dark place'

Carlisle has revealed he attempted to take his own life two days afterwards, when he was hit by a lorry on the A64 near York.

Miss Judge described the arrest as having happened while he was "in an extremely dark place in terms of his own life".

Carlisle is now so sorry about what happened that the court-ordered medical report on him "utterly oozes remorse", Miss Judge said.

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

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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