Wed, 12 Feb 2020
A SINGLE parent whose life had spiralled out of control was caught driving while disqualified.
But the 43-year-old told Reading Magistrates’ Court that he had been unaware of the disqualification after falling on hard times.
A formerly prosperous painter and decorator, Ryan Roderick Stritch had lost his home and had not read the letter which would have informed him his licence had been revoked, the court heard.
Andy Callender, prosecuting, said police officers were alerted to the fact that Mr Stritch was disqualified when they stopped his Vauxhall Vectra on London Road, Newbury, on December 13 last year.
Mr Stritch, of West Street, Newbury, admitted driving while disqualified and driving without insurance.
Catherine Brymer, defending, said her client had become a full-time single parent but had struggled with the rent.
She added: “He was evicted for not paying some installments and for six months he had nowhere to live.”
Meanwhile the children had to move back with their mother, the court heard.
Mrs Brymer said her client had been banned under the penalty points ‘totting up’ procedure but that he didn’t receive the letter informing him because he had no home at the time.
More bad luck was in store.
Mrs Bymer went on: “The first he knew was when the police officer pulled him over.
“Then his vehicle was seized and he couldn’t afford to pay the recovery fee – so the vehicle was scrapped.”
She pointed out that there had been no issues with the way Mr Stritch had been driving.
Magistrates told Mr Stritch he had clearly got himself “in a bit of a pickle” and agreed not to impose any further period of disqualification.
Instead, they added six penalty points to his licence and fined him £180. In addition, Mr Stritch was ordered to pay £85 costs, plus a statutory victim services surcharge of £32.