Alison Whelan spent two days drinking and eating plant nightshade, causing her to hallucinate before she and her companion Tristam Locke unmoored a 45ft-long passenger ferry in the River Dart and ‘set sail.’
As Devon as police tried to intercept them, they were heard laughing and shouting back at the officers “I’m Jack Sparrow” and “I’m a pirate, you can’t do anything.”
Alison Whelan, 51, stole the 100-seater ferry on the River Dart in Devon after she had been drinking Lambrini and eating deadly plant nightshade for two days, causing her to hallucinate.
Whelan of Paignton, Devon was sentenced to 112 days in jail for the incident which saw the ferry bumping into other boats ‘like a pinball machine’ in a police chase that lasted an hour.
More than 30 ambulance, police, coastguard and RNLI officers were drafted in during the incident, Torquay Magistrates Court in Devon heard.
Speaking after the hearing, PC Clare Pearson said: ‘This lady put the Police, Ambulance and Coast Guard to an awful lot of trouble,” adding, “the amount of people called out to recover the boat and the damage caused to other vessels made it quite an expensive night.”
The ferry bumped into a £70,000 fibreglass catamaran causing £300 of damage and another moored vessel. It finally came to rest in still water about a mile or so upstream from where it started.
When arrested Whelan said they would have ended up in St Tropez, France if they had not been caught.
Whelan admitted that she and Locke had been on a drinking spree around Torbay, Devon and that she had consumed poisonous nightshade, causing her to hallucinate.
Not exactly a Disney epic, but perhaps a little too lively for the people near the sleepy River Dart. It is thought Whelan and her companion Locke are now spending their time wisely, by taking navigation classes whilst ‘resting’ at Her Majesty’s Pleasure.
Sent in by Staurt Gough, Solent Yachts, Our man in the UK