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Sunday 21 September 2014

Dolores Keane: Drink driving an awful mistake

Paddy Clancy

Published 24/07/2014 | 02:30

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Dolores Keane outside Glenties Court after being told she would have to wait until March to get her licence back after a drink-driving ban. Photo: Clive Wasson.
Dolores Keane outside Glenties Court after being told she would have to wait until March to get her licence back after a drink-driving ban. Photo: Clive Wasson.

Singer Dolores Keane admitted she made an "awful mistake" as she warned against the stupidity of drink driving.

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The singer was speaking after a hearing in Glenties District Court where she applied half-way through a four-year drive ban for the return of her licence.

Keane told the judge that she had developed breast cancer and there were continuing medical appointments she must keep. She was also applying for the return of her licence to transport her blind son.

Judge Paul Kelly, who admitted at a previous hearing he was a fan of the singer, told Keane he was prohibited in law from returning her licence now.

Cancer

After hearing how she needed her licence to attend medical appointments following development of breast cancer and, to continue to attend her AA meetings, he said: "I can only grant the restoration of the licence from March 12 next.

"I can't do any more for you. Hopefully we won't see you here in these circumstances again."

The 60-year-old singer told the judge: "I am well aware I made an awful mistake."

She told the court: "I am a recovering alcoholic. I have learned a lot. I went into Hope House for treatment and I haven't had a drink for the last year.

"Today is the first anniversary since my last drink."

She thanked Judge Kelly for listening to her after he explained she still couldn't drive until next March.

The four-year ban in July 2012 for being twice over the alcohol limit in March 2011 was her third disqualification.

Keane, who was driven to court by a friend who also transports her to appointments and gigs, said outside the court: "On my breast cancer, I was in the other day for a mammogram and a scan.

"I got the all-clear, but I had the all-clear before that appointment. I'm going for the next five years – but every time you don't know what the outcome is going to be."

She said: "I have a message for all motorists and drinkers. Drunken driving is totally not on.

"It's so stupid. I have missed out on an awful lot because I was so stupid. My licence meant an awful lot to me and my family, my son and daughter, and I have missed it," the singer said.

"It's a terrible realisation that you just can't walk out your front door and get into a car and drive to do the shopping."

Irish Independent

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