A 42-year-old Warwick man was banned from driving on Bermuda’s roads after he admitted driving whilst disqualified with three times more than the legal limit and failing to stop for police
Tiko Hassell initially denied the offence, but changed his plea to guilty when he appeared in Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday, after he was informed that his disqualification ended on April 28 – the day after he was stopped by police.
On April 27, officers on patrol on Ord Road in Warwick spotted a driver who had committed another offence, who was driving while disqualified.
Hassell was seen driving the car west along Ord Road, when he was signalled to stop, but he proceeded to speed up and overtook three cars, forcing oncoming traffic to brake to avoid a collision.
He was followed until a stationary vehicle on Cherry Lane forced him stop.
The officers told him that he was driving while disqualified, but Hassell said he thought the disqualification had ended that day.
He admitted that he had been drinking and agreed to provide breath sample, which he said he was likely to fail because he had “been out for two months drinking”.
The test result – 230 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood — almost three times the legal limit of 80 milligrams.
The court also heard that this was Hassell’s third conviction for driving under the influence of alcohol. His last conviction was in November 2018.
Magistrate Maxanne Anderson fined Hassell $750 for driving while disqualified, $200 for failing to stop for police and another $1,500 for driving while over the legal alcohol limit and disqualified him from driving.
She referred Hassell to the DUI Court programme, but she did not specify the disqualification period, saying Hassell should be able to earn his licence back through the programme.