Derby County footballers spared jail after admitting to drink-driving and failing to stop after accident

Tom Lawrence and Mason Bennett appeared at Derby Magistrates' Court on Tuesday morning to make their pleas

Lawrence Ostlere
Tuesday 15 October 2019 11:23 BST
Tom Lawrence arrives at Derby Magistrates' Court
Tom Lawrence arrives at Derby Magistrates' Court (PA)

Derby County footballers Tom Lawrence, 25, and Mason Bennett, 23, have been spared jail time after pleading guilty to drink-driving and failing to stop at the scene of an accident, following a crash last month which left their club captain Richard Keogh with career-threatening injuries.

They will each have to complete 180 hours of unpaid work and have been banned from driving for two years.

The players were on the way home from a night out at The Joiners Arms pub in Quarndon, Derbyshire when Lawrence’s car crashed into the back of Bennett’s on the A6.

Lawrence tested for 58 microgrammes of alcohol per 100 millimetres of breath, while Bennett’s sample recorded 64 microgrammes per 100 millimetres of breath. The legal limit is 35mg.

Lawrence was carrying two passengers: Keogh and an 18-year-old academy player.

Lawrence left the scene by foot, walking to a nearby petrol station, while Bennett drove away in his damaged Mercedes. They left Keogh at the scene before returning together 45 minutes later.

In the meantime paramedics had arrived to treat the Republic of Ireland international, who is believed to have torn his anterior cruciate ligament in the collision.

Derby manager Phillip Cocu confirmed that Keogh, 33, will not play again this season.

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