Prison worker's career ruined having driven 24 hours after having cannabis joint

Wigan and Leigh Magistrates' Court
Wigan and Leigh Magistrates' Court

A prison worker has destroyed his own career after being caught at the wheel under the influence of drugs, a court heard.

Wigan magistrates were told Patrick Duffy drove a Citroen DS3 on the East Lancs Road while unfit to do so.

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The court heard police were called to a crash at the road’s junction with Newton Road on April 20. Martin Jones, defending, said the 40-year-old, of Knowsley Avenue, Golborne, was involved in a collision with another vehicle driven by someone who then tried to get away from the scene.

And the consequences for Duffy will be severe due to his work’s zero-tolerance policy towards drug-taking.

The hearing was told Duffy had been at a pub with friends 24 hours before the crash and ventured outside to get cigarettes after a drinking session. He was given something he thought just contained nicotine but was found to be cannabis.

Mr Jones said: “He accepts he had drunk rather more than he usually does and ended up smoking this cannabis cigarette. Twenty-four hours later this occurs. It has had a disastrous effect on him.

"He works as a prison custody officer and there are random drug tests. He is going to lose his job and he has lost his good character and name.

“He bitterly regrets his stupidity. He believes he has been the victim of a slice of bad luck but he accepts by his plea that he is guilty as charged.”

Duffy was fined £384 and must pay £123 in costs and surcharge and hit with a 12-month road ban.