The nurse was followed by concerned members of the public and recorded taking a breathalyzer test more than four times in the legal limit. Photo / Duncan Brown
An alcoholic nurse who drank more than four times the legal limit says she is now a stranger and wants to change.
The nurse, whose name has been withheld for the time being, was spotted by members of the public concerned about her driving on August 25. They followed her into a parking lot where she was stopped. He took the car and stayed with him until the police arrived.
The nurse admitted to drinking alcohol but said she had only had two glasses of wine two hours earlier and had trouble functioning.
A breath test revealed 1611 micrograms of alcohol per liter of breath, more than four times the legal limit of 400 micrograms.
At Christchurch District Court today his barrister Rupert Ward said he was now a stranger. He said he has come to the conclusion that his alcoholism is not a unique personality trait, but rather a “convenience”.
He said he didn’t want to drive, he came from a very loving family, and his father was in court to support him. He is also considering selling his car, as he can walk to his workplace.
Community Magistrate Sally O’Brien said a pre-sentence report said the nurse had become addicted to alcohol and admitted she desperately needed help.
She said it was good to know the nurse was working to change by going to support meetings and said there was a monitoring order to support her.
O’Brien sentenced the nurse to 12 months’ supervision and disqualified her from driving for 12 months. He was also ordered to pay a $1600 fine and $130 in court costs.