Tearful Sky Sports presenter Kirsty Gallacher is banned from driving for two years as she blames ‘stress of divorce … – Daily Mail
Sky Sports News presenter Kirsty Gallacher arrives at Slough Magistrates’ Court
Sky Sports presenter Kirsty Gallacher has been banned from driving for two years as she blames the ‘stress of divorce’ on being three times the drink-drive limit.
The 41-year-old, from Virginia Water in Surrey, admitted driving a vehicle while above the legal limit, at Slough Magistrates’ Court.
She was also ordered to carry out 100 hours of community service and fined £85.
The court heard how the mother-of-two, 41, had left the Sky Sports studios in west London to meet up with friends at a bar on Friday August 11 and partied into the small hours.
She left the bar in a taxi at around 3am, keeping her red BMW X4 parked outside.
But returned in an Uber cab to pick up her car, shortly after 10am.
Gallacher was arrested in Eton, Berkshire, after witnesses saw her driving erratically at around 11am.
Officers tracked her BMW using CCTV and ‘smelt alcohol’ when they approached her.
They conducted a roadside breathalyser test and Gallacher was shown to have an alcohol level of 106 microgrammes in 100 millilitres of breath.
The drink-drive limit is 35 microgrammes per 100 millilitres of breath.
Gallacher had been going through tough divorce proceedings with ex-husband Paul Sampson at the time and was ‘horrified’ by the situation, magistrates were told.
Gallacher admitted a charge of driving a motor vehicle while above the legal limit
The court heard how she was on her way to pick up sons’ from former rugby star Mr Sampson’s house, when she was arrested.
Jasvir Kaar Bhatti, probation officer, said: ‘There was no intention to drive while over the limit.
‘She did not realise she was over the next day.’
He added: ‘She does not have a drink problem. She works long hours and drives a lot so she does not usually drink.
‘There are divorce proceedings going on at the moment which are stressful. She is very remorseful and apologises.’
Jennifer Dempster, in mitigation, said her client was not ‘someone who normally drinks to excess’ and was of ‘good character.’
Gallacher is led into a car by her legal team as she leaves Slough Magistrates’ Court today
As Judge Lachhar passed sentence Gallagher was visibly upset, biting her bottom lip and struggling to find words to confirm she had understood – simply nodding her head
She added: ‘This is not intentional drink driving, she was not leaving the pub at midnight and driving home. She is horrified she is in this position.
‘This is a young lady, it has been a stressful time.There are difficulties arising from the breakdown of her marriage, the final hearing for which is next week.’
Ms Dempster called for a financial penalty for her client because despite earning a decent wage, her substantial monthly outgoings would mean a fine would still have a punitive effect.
She added: ‘There is not a huge amount left over.’
Ms Dempster also asked for Gallacher not to be given a community order because of the ‘media circus’ that would follow her.
Gallacher blamed the ‘stress of divorce’ from former rugby star Mark Sampson as the cause of her drink driving (Left, Gallacher on Sky and right, the pair together)
However, this was quickly dismissed by Judge Davinder Lachhar.
He said: ‘Just because there is a media circus that does not change the sentence.’
Sentencing, he told Gallacher: ‘I take into account the mitigation of the family proceedings.
‘I give you credit for pleading guilty. I am going to impose a 12 month community order of 100 hours of unpaid work, you must pay £85 prosecution costs and you are disqualified from driving for two years.’
As Judge Lachhar passed sentence Gallagher was visibly upset, biting her bottom lip and struggling to find words to confirm she had understood.
Gallacher is considered the poster girl for Sky Sports News and will celebrate her 20th anniversary with the channel next year.
Gallacher posted this Instagram photo of her with friends at the Winning Post in Winkfield, the night before she was pulled over
The night before her arrest she had appeared on the channel at 6pm for an hour-long show to preview the start of the Premier League football season.
She later joined friends at the Winning Post pub in Winkfield, Berkshire.
A friend of Gallacher told the Daily Mail: ‘We know for a fact that she will continue presenting Sky Sports News.
‘We do not know what will happen after the court case. That would be pure speculation at this stage. The matter is now with Kirsty’s lawyers.’
Gallacher has become almost as well-known for her healthy lifestyle and fitness regime as for her broadcasting career.
Earlier this year she featured on the cover of Fit And Well magazine. She has said that although she is in her 40s she is in the best shape of her life.