17:34 Thursday 02 January 2014

Drink-driving Twitter scheme comes to an end

Written bySARAH BOULD

A CONTROVERSIAL campaign by Staffordshire Police that named and shamed people on Twitter throughout has ended.

More than 80 people were named on the social networking site last month, all of whom had been stopped by police officers and charged with drink-driving.

The scheme was met with some criticism on the site, with some tweeting that people should not be named until they have appeared before the courts.

A leading traffic lawyer even called for the resignation of Stafordshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Matthee Ellis.

Nick Freeman, known as Mr Loophole,for winning a host of celebrity clients cases of motoring offences.

Mr Ellis said: “The proactive approach Staffordshire Police are taking is to raise the issue of drink-driving and the tragedy it can cause by naming people after formal charge. If just one person is saved because more people are thinking hard before drinking and getting behind the wheel of a car, that’s got to be a benefit, but only at charge.

“Mr Freeman said it’s immoral that the police are naming drink-drivers after they’ve been charged but I think it’s immoral to miss any opportunity to potentially save just one life.

“It is a clear case of morals. Mr Freeman has obviously earned his nickname, ‘Mr Loophole’, and a widely reported £10,000 a day fee for those who can afford it, for a reason. But legal loopholes are no solace for families who have lost dear ones through injuries caused by drink-drivers.”

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