Clarke Carlisle out of coma but misses drink-drive hearing

FORMER LEEDS United footballer Clarke Carlisle has come out of his coma, a court was told today.

Clarke Carlisle
Clarke Carlisle

The 35-year-old, who also played for Burnley, Queens Park Rangers and Northampton Town, was seriously injured after being struck by a lorry on the A64 near York on December 22.

That was just two days after he had been charged with a drink-driving offence of failing to provide a sample on December 20. He has been treated in a hospital in Leeds.

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Defence lawyer Zeenat Islam told Highbury Magistrates’ Court in north London that Carlisle had come out of his coma “literally in the last few days but he is still receiving intense treatment for his injuries”.

She was telling the court why Carlisle - also the chairman of the Professional Footballers’ Association - was not at today’s hearing, which would have been his first appearance on a drink-driving offence.

She said: “He was in a quite serious road traffic accident in December and is currently in hospital. He was in a coma as a result of his injuries. He has only recently awoken from that coma in the last few days.

“As it stands, he is not in a position to obviously attend court. We are unable to take instructions in relation to this matter.”

In asking for an adjournment, she said that Carlisle’s legal team would contact the court and the Crown Prosecution Service with an update on his health and progress when it becomes available.

Deputy district judge Peter King said he would extend Carlisle’s bail until March 23 at the same court. He also asked for an update on his progress within 28 days.

Carlisle’s wife Gemma wrote on Twitter on January 13: “Thank you again for asking after Clarke. He’s still in hospital but is getting better and stronger each day.”