A banned Sunderland driver missed the birth of his daughter after getting arrested while driving his pregnant partner to hospital.
Robert McLeod, 38, was told there was a three-hour wait for an ambulance after his partner went into labour on July 24.
Despite serving a four year driving ban he opted against getting a taxi and illegally drove to hospital.
South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court heard McLeod was stopped by police on Millennium Way, Sunderland, and arrested.
His defence solicitor Jason Smith said McLeod immediately told officers “I am a disqualified driver, I shouldn’t be driving but this is what is happening.”
McLeod was taken into custody and his daughter was born while he was still at the police station.
Prosecuting, Ben Woodward, said: “Police received information that the defendant was driving while disqualified.
“He was subsequently arrested and made admissions that he was driving while disqualified and without insurance.”
But Mr Woodward later added that McLeod said he was “going to pick up a friend who was in need” and made no mention of driving to hospital.
The court heard McLeod had received a four year driving ban in 2018 for drug-driving and also had a past conviction of failing to stop after an accident.
Jason Smith, defending, said: “In this case there is substantial mitigation. He was at this partner’s house and she was heavily pregnant with his child.
“His partner has gone into labour that night and her waters broke.
“He rang for an ambulance because he is disqualified, but was told it would be about three hours.
“He didn’t want to wait so he put her in her car and drove to hospital.
“His daughter was born that evening when he was in the custody suite.
“There was no suggestion that there was anything wrong with his driving.
“He’s punished doubly because he spends the night in the police cell instead of the hospital when his daughter is born and he should have been there with her.”
McLeod, of Cossack Terrace, Sunderland, pleaded guilty to driving while disqualified and driving without insurance.
Mr Smith argued that McLeod should receive six points on his licence and be ordered to pay a fine.
But magistrates told McLeod he should have called a taxi or asked his friend to drive to the hospital.
He received a further three month driving ban and was ordered to pay £239 to the court.