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Drunk and Disorderly

20 Year Old Hooligan Barred From Every Pub in England and Wales

posted 03:47 AM EST, Sun April 18, 2010

20 year old Laura Hall has been getting drunk and causing problems in her hometown of Bromsgrove for years. She is now the first person in England to receive a national ban on drinking in public.

Laura Hall, 20, can’t visit a pub or bar anywhere in England or Wales, she can’t drink in public, can’t carry an open container of alcohol and she can’t buy alcohol at a store. Laura Hall is the first person in the UK to receive a nation-wide ban on alcohol, a Drinking Banning Order (DBO), as a consequence of years of drunken bad behavior in her hometown of Bromsgrove in Worcestershire.

Judges in Kidderminster used the newly created DBO measure, hoping to help Hall overcome problems with alcohol while also sparing local citizens her antisocial drunken behaviors. If she is caught in breach of the conditions of the DBO she faces a fine of $3800.

West Mercia Police Officer Sgt. David Roberts commented on Hall’s sentencing, saying, "The conditions will also help to protect the public from the anti-social effects of Laura's behaviour. We want to rehabilitate her rather than send her straight to jail, and hope the banning order will help Laura address her problems." Roberts said that he hoped that Hall realized that the DBO wasn’t really a punishment, but rather an opportunity for her to get her life back on the right track.

Although licensing officers say that this first DBO should serve as a warning to others, critics wonder if such a prohibition is really enforceable. Rachel Seabrook, of the Institute of Alcohol Studies weighed in, saying, “How can a police officer in Wales know this woman has been banned if she turns up in his town?"

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