05 April 2022

Burnley’s Dale Stephens banned from driving for a year after drink-drive charge

05 April 2022

Burnley midfielder Dale Stephens has been fined more than £3,500 and banned from driving for 12 months.

Stephens, 32, pleaded guilty at Stockport Magistrates Court on Monday after being charged with driving a vehicle with alcohol above the legal limit.

The court heard that a breath test found Stephens with 59 micrograms of alcohol in his breath, with the legal drink-drive limit being 35mcg, after he had been driving in Alderley Edge on March 14.

“Burnley Football Club are aware of a police incident involving one of our players, Dale Stephens,” a statement from the Premier League club said.

“As a football club we uphold strong values and hold all our players and staff to the highest standards.

“As such, we are treating this incident with the utmost seriousness as legal proceedings are undertaken.

“As a club, we strongly disapprove of the actions that resulted in such an incident and therefore disciplinary procedures will also be carried out internally.

“Burnley Football Club make no further comment.”

Stephens, who was driving a Range Rover car, told the police office who stopped him that he’d “had a pint”.

Senior Crown Prosecutor Simon McDonnell said: “Dale Stephens is a Premier League footballer and is no doubt looked up to by many football fans and could be considered a role model.

“Unfortunately, on the night of 14 March 2022, he chose to get behind the wheel of a car after he had been drinking more than he is legally allowed to and drive.

“The fact that there were not more serious consequences from his actions is sheer luck.

“He could have injured or killed someone. He also had a passenger in the car at the time.

“Drinking, even to the legal limit, impairs the driver’s ability to perform and react and is inadvisable.

“To get behind the wheel of a powerful car when you have drunk more than the legal limit is reckless, irresponsible, and dangerous.

“Mr Stephens may have a glamorous job, but no-one is above the law and he is now facing the consequences of what he chose to do on that night.”

Stephens joined Burnley on a two-year deal from Brighton in September 2020 and has since made 13 appearances for the Clarets.

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