Man Who Drunk Nine Pints and Crashed His Car Into A Train is Sent To Prison

A PYMOOR man who jumped the lights at a railway level crossing and crashed his car into an oncoming train following a cocaine and alcohol binge has been sentenced to eight months in prison. Richard Martin, 22, had to be cut free from the twisted wreckage

A PYMOOR man who jumped the lights at a railway level crossing and crashed his car into an oncoming train following a cocaine and alcohol binge has been sentenced to eight months in prison.

Richard Martin, 22, had to be cut free from the twisted wreckage of his Vauxhall Corsa by the fire service after the 11.30pm train from King's Lynn smashed into his car on the Padnal Bank level crossing at Littleport.

Martin was handed the custodial sentence after appearing at Cambridge Crown Court on Thursday where he was also banned from driving for three years.

The 22 year-old had become stranded on the tracks after he opted to try and negotiate the crossing while the barriers were down - he subsequently lost control of his vehicle however, and he spun into the path of the oncoming train.

Alerted by the commotion of the impact, drinkers at the nearby Black Horse pub rushed to the scene and contacted the emergency services. Fire crews later cut Martin free before he was checked over by medical teams who found that he had suffered several broken ribs.

Subsequent forensic tests carried out on Martin showed he had both cocaine and a high amount of alcohol in his bloodstream. He had drunk a minimum of nine pints of lager.

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Though the Corsa was damaged beyond repair, none of the 30 passengers on board the train were injured and the train driver said he was travelling at less than 60mph on the approach to Littleport Railway Station.

Sergeant Paul Gray of the British Transport Police told the Ely Standard: We are pleased with the sentence and we hope that it sends a message out to all the people who think it's worth taking the risk at a level crossing."

Martin admitted dangerous driving, and driving his Vauxhall Corsa without insurance when he appeared before magistrates at Ely courthouse on March 19. Ely magistrates heard that Martin was unable to remember anything after leaving the pub, until he woke up in hospital the following day. In hospital, he admitted having taken cocaine.

In mitigation, solicitor Catherine Bradd said Martin's birthday had been the previous day. On the day of the accident he had been to work, and then went out, drinking excessively and consuming cocaine to continue his birthday celebrations.

"He thinks someone gave him the cocaine," said," Catherine Bradd in mitigation.

"His car was his pride and joy, and he was saving for insurance. He is not able to offer an explanation of how his car came to be on the level crossing. He accepts his judgement was impaired by using cocaine."

At the time, landlord of the Black Horse Pub Harild Rauch said Martin was lucky to be alive. "His guardian angels were with him that day," he told the Ely Standard.

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