Cocaine drug-driver is jailed after he was spotted weaving across the road

A cocaine-user who registered 16 times a drug-drive limit has been put behind bars.

By Jon Cooper
Monday, 11th February 2019, 3:00 pm
Updated Monday, 11th February 2019, 3:02 pm

Chesterfield magistrates’ court heard on February 5 how Luke Sydenham, 25, was spotted by police driving a VW Golf erratically on Chesterfield Road, at Tibshelf.

Prosecuting solicitor Marianne Connally said: “The evidence comes from a police officer who was on mobile patrol in an unmarked vehicle in Chesterfield on August 5, and into August 6, just after midnight.

“He was driving towards Tibshelf and his attention was drawn to a blue VW Golf.

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Pictured is Luke Sydenham, 25, of Manchester Road, at Tunstead Milton, in Whaley Bridge, who has been jailed for 14 weeks after he admitted drug-driving, possessing cocaine and to driving with flase number plates.

“There was no other traffic but the vehicle attracted his attention because of the manner of the driving.”

Ms Connally added that the officer followed Sydenham whose vehicle accelerated sharply and was then being driven at slow speeds while crossing the centre of the road.

Sydenham, of Manchester Road, at Tunstead Milton, in Whaley Bridge, was also weaving, according to Ms Connally, before the vehicle clipped a kerb.

Ms Connally said police stopped the vehicle and discovered Sydenham was wide-eyed and restless and it was suspected he was under the influence of drugs.

Chesterfield magistrates' court.

Sydenham registered 800 microgrammes of benzoylecgonine - which is a cocaine metabolite - per litre of blood in his system when the legal limit is 50 microgrammes.

Police also found five small bags of the class A drug cocaine, according to Ms Connally, which had been in his possession for personal use.

He admitted to police he had been using the class A drug earlier in the day before driving.

Sydenham, who has previous convictions including driving while disqualified and driving without insurance, pleaded guilty to exceeding the drug-drive limit and also admitted possessing the class A drug cocaine.

He also pleaded guilty to fraudulently using false registration number plates.

Sydenham told the court: “What I did was wrong. I understand it was wrong. I’m sorry for doing it.

“It was a bad time because I was struggling.”

He added that he had been using false number plates because he could not afford to get the vehicle MOT tested at the time.

Sydenham admitted he has been using drugs on-and-off but insisted they were only for recreational use and that he did not have a drug habit.

Magistrates, who stated that Sydenham had been driving under the influence of cocaine and cannabis, sentenced the defendant to 14 weeks of custody and he was ordered to pay a £115 victim surcharge.

Sydenham was also banned from driving for three years.