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Dog walking driver loses licence

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A dog owner who walked his lurcher from behind the wheel of his car has lost his driving licence.

Paul Railton was exercising the dog by dangling the lead out of his car window while driving slowly down Stonyheap Lane, near Consett on December 4.

The 23-year-old from County Durham was spotted driving the Nissan Navara with the dog running alongside by a cyclist - who reported the incident to the police.

Railton pleaded guilty to not being in proper control of a vehicle at Consett Magistrates' Court. He was given three penalty points which - added to the nine he already had - led to a six-month driving ban.

Sharon Lowrie, prosecuting, said: "The driver was hanging onto the dog's lead through the driver window, approaching a blind summit."

Unemployed Railton - who was charged at his home five days after the incident - was also fined £66 and ordered to pay £43 costs and a legal surcharge of £15.

© Press Association 2010