A CARDIFF man who crashed his car into a petrol pump on a garage forecourt was disqualified from driving and over the drink-drive limit at the time.
Appearing in Llanelli Magistrates’ Court via videolink on Thursday (Jan 4) Thomas Morgan, 28, pleaded guilty to charges of driving while over the specified alcohol limit, driving without due care and attention, driving while disqualified, and driving without insurance.
The court heard that Morgan, of Longspears Avenue, was currently in prison for leading police on a high-speed chase in Cardiff while twice the legal alcohol limit in July.
Prosecuting, Abul Hussein said that a Vauxhall Astra driven by Morgan had collided with a pump at a fuel station near St Clears as well as striking a member of the public on June 10.
“As a result of the collision, substantial damage was caused to the fuel pump. A number of persons got out of the Vauxhall Astra and stayed at the scene for a few minutes before running off to an unclassified road,” he added, explaining that CCTV footage showed Morgan exiting the drivers’ door of the car.
A police officer located the defendant half a mile away on the unclassified road. He was subsequently arrested but had sustained injuries to his leg and needed medical attention.
At West Wales General Hospital, a blood sample showed 165mcg within 100 ml of blood, over twice the legal limit. “At the time of the offence Mr Morgan was actually disqualified from driving. There are lots of similar convictions recorded and in August of last year, the defendant was disqualified from driving for a total of 24 months with a four month extension,” Mr Hussein added.
The court heard that a compensation claim for £14,883.80 had been made by the garage to cover the ‘substantial damage’ done to the pump.
Representing Morgan, John Wilkins in mitigation said that the defendant had ‘no recollection’ of the events.
He added that Morgan had been in custody since August for offences which post-dated this incident.
“As a result of the accident, my client was hospitalised. It’s more luck than judgement that he wasn’t more seriously injured and there wasn’t more serious damage. Some credit should be awarded for an early guilty plea,” he added.
“I’m glad that you actually realise how foolish you are,” Chair of the Bench, Lynne Davies told Morgan. “You’ve done this once, then again and again. There are a substantial number of previous and similar offences prior to the last custody sentence.”
Morgan was jailed for 16 weeks, to run concurrently with his existing sentence. In addition, he was banned from driving for 36 months and ordered to pay a total of £200 in costs and victim surcharge on release.
However, magistrates decided that there was ‘insufficient evidence’ for compensation to be awarded.
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THE HERO of London Bridge who was stabbed nine times as he fought off three terrorists armed with just a police baton has called on Carmarthen people to nominate an unsung hero of their own.
And British Transport Police Officer Wayne Marques said bravery and courage should be recognised because it is inspiring and encouraging to others.
He said: “Every tragedy has a silver lining and it is up to us to make sure that silver shines.”
Wayne, 39, who won the Against All Odds category in last year’s global hearing specialists Amplifon’s Brave Britons awards, was on patrol in the area of London Bridge Station when he heard screams on the evening of June 3 last year and then he saw people being stabbed in Borough High Street near the junction with London Bridge Street.
He charged at one of the terrorists lashing out with his baton. But soon he was being attacked by all three terrorists one stabbing him above his right eye which cause him to go temporarily blind in the eye.
More than 12 months on and Wayne still travels from his South London home to Harrogate, Yorkshire, where he receives rehabilitation treatment.
Seven people died in the attack and many more were badly injured.
Now Wayne is calling on people who know of acts of courage or bravery to nominate them for this year’s Amplifon – who have a store in Merlins Walk Shopping Centre, Carmarthen – Brave Briton awards.
He said: “I first felt surprised and then humble when I was nominated by a person I didn’t even know. The fact they had taken their time to fill in a form and nominate me made me feel very honoured. It would have been wrong for me to respond in any other way.”
Wayne added: “We need more people honoured in the way I was because there are a lot of people out there who go beyond what is expected of them for the sake of others.
“Even uniformed services personnel who do a job where they are expected to sometimes face danger go beyond that expectation and react to the highest magnitude.
“To nominate others and put them in the limelight is so inspiring and encouraging to others in their communities and around the country.
“Through adversity we as a nation tend to pull together. How we rally together makes this country great.”
There are six categories in the Amplifon Brave Britons awards: Against All Odds, Young Hero, Service To Their Country, Active Agers, Hero Pet, and Charity Champion.
Anyone who wishes to nominate a hero in any of the categories should visit http://www.amplifon.com
Finalists will be invited to an awards ceremony to be held at the Army and Navy Club, Pall Mall, London, on Tuesday, October 16.
A panel of judges including Falklands hero Simon Weston will also choose an overall Hero from the category winners who will win a trip to Italy.
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