Haverfordwest court hears of naked uni student's crash and run
1:50pm Wednesday 19th August 2009 in News
When student Thomas Phillpot went to bed after a night out in July, he didn't envisage that just hours later he'd be running naked down the road following a vehicle collision.
At Haverfordwest magistrates court yesterday (Tuesday), Phillpot, of Fold House in Herbrandston, pleaded guilty to charges of dangerous driving and drink driving.
Prosecutor Ellie Morgan described how emergency services were called to the road between Herbrandston and Milford Haven at around 5am on Sunday, June 28th.
"The complainant, Mr Lennon, noticed a Vauxhall Corsa coming towards him on the wrong side of the road about 60 yards away" she said.
"He slowed down but the oncoming driver made no attempt to break or stop and the vehicles collided head on."
Ms Morgan added a female passenger in Mr Lennon's car was badly injured in the collision, and when he got out of his car to confront Phillpot he was surprised to see the defendant was naked.
"A physical and verbal exchange then followed and the defendant pushed Mr Lennon before running off towards the village.
"He soon returned in a vehicle driven by his mother."
The court heard how Phillpot, aged 22, then tried to run away from the police and, after being arrested, admitted drink driving but claimed it was actually Mr Lennon who was on the wrong side of the road.
He then delivered a breathalyser reading more than three times over the legal limit.
"During police interview he said he'd drunk lots of beer and vodka that night" said Ms Morgan.
"He eventually accepted Mr Lennon's version of events was correct and told officers he was 'tanked up'.
"He also claimed he wasn't running away to escape but to get his mother so he could sort out insurance details."
Defence lawyer Sean Dyer labelled the case 'unusual', and accepted the facts were not in dispute.
"He came home and said goodnight to his mum, then the next thing he remembers is the collision" he said.
Mr Dyer also handed in three references on behalf of Phillpot, and argued a financial penalty was not suitable as he is currently studying at Aberystwyth University.
The presiding magistrate told Phillpot he was no doubt 'highly embarrassed' with the situation.
He was ordered to do 200 hours unpaid work, pay £60 prosecution costs and had his licence revoked for 12 months for dangerous driving and 24 months for drink driving. He was also told he would have to re-take his driving text once his ban expired.