Royal Gazette reporter banned for drink-driving

A senior reporter for The Royal Gazette was banned from the roads this morning after he admitted driving while impaired. ( Story courtesy of the RG )

Shaun Connolly, 50, pleaded guilty to the offence in Magistrates’ Court, saying he was extremely embarrassed and angry at himself for what happened.

“The newspaper I work for has campaigned for road safety, and it’s a cause I fully support,” he said.

“I trust and believe that I will move forward from this blemish on my record. I aim to be of better service to the community.”

The court heard that Connolly, who lives in Pembroke, was stopped by police on the evening of March 18 after they saw him driving along Middle Road in Devonshire at an “extremely slow rate of speed” and crossing the centre line.

Officers asked Connolly if he was all right and noticed when he responded that his voice was slurred.

Asked if he had been drinking, he admitted that he had a few glasses of wine.

Connolly agreed to provide police with a sample of breath, but when he came out of the vehicle, the officers said, he appeared to be unsteady and had to lean against the police car to maintain his balance.

The court also heard that before he was stopped by police he had been involved in a minor collision with a parked car, damaging the vehicle’s bumper, but that he had compensated the owner before his appearance in court.

Marc Daniels, who represented Connolly in court, said his client was ashamed of his actions and that the incident was out of character, noting that he had a previously clean driving record in Bermuda and his native Britain.

Magistrate Maxanne Anderson noted the seriousness of the offence, adding: “I have a duty to send a message to the public that this court will not tolerate drunk-driving.“

She banned Connolly from driving for 18 months and fined him $1,500, ordering that the fine be paid forthwith despite a request for time to pay by Mr Daniels.

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