Drunken woman steals buggy to take her home

Reporter: Kim Pilling
Date published: 16 January 2009

Shopaholic on an Asda scooter!

A WOMAN who stole a supermarket mobility scooter from Chadderton was banned from driving after she tried to make a 10–mile journey home to Stretford.

Amanda Leaff took the buggy — capable of a maximum speed of 2.4 mph — from Asda following a drunken night out and planned to drive through Manchester city centre.

But her plan ended in Hollinwood when an off–duty police officer spotted Leaff (46) driving erratically in Oldham Road around 10.45pm on November 12 — some two–and–a–half miles into her journey.

She was breathalysed and gave a breath alcohol reading of 77mg — the legal limit is 35mg.

Oldham Magistrates’ Court was told she used the vehicle to save on a taxi fare.

The court heard she had been drinking in a pub in Chadderton when the heel of her friend’s shoe snapped off.

Leaff decided to take the scooter to give her friend a lift to the friend’s house nearby.

Two hours later Leaff set off for home — a trip which would have lasted at least four hours.

Leaff told the court she intended to return the buggy the following day.

She pleaded guilty to driving a mobility scooter while unfit through drink and taking the vehicle without consent.

Magistrates banned Leaff from driving for 20 months.

Chief Insp Haydn Roberts of Greater Manchester Police’s Traffic Network Section said: “It is extremely irresponsible to try and drive any vehicle while under the influence of alcohol.

An Asda spokesman said: “We’re disappointed that one of our disability scooters was misused in this way. Our scooters are there to provide help while shopping to those customers who need them.”

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