A social worker who held an all-night party at her home where schoolchildren snorted cocaine and drank vodka has been spared jail.
Young teenagers were supplied with cocaine and offered amphetamine during the party which went on until 5am at Susan Downing’s Rishton home last February.
Partygoers saw Downing, 37, snorting cocaine off keys and through straws and said she was in a ‘bad way’, 'gurning with her jaw swinging’, a court heard.
But Downing - who has since quit her job as a support worker - was spared jail by a judge who was convinced she had turned her life around.
Her co-defendant Rachel MacLachlan, 32, was jailed for three years after she admitted supplying cocaine to children at the party and offering to supply one youngster with amphetamine.
The events came to light when a teenage boy confessed to his family that he had been given vodka and cocaine at the party.
Prosecutor Stephen Parker told Burnley Crown Court there were a lot of people at the house all “making lines and snorting cocaine through straws”.
During the night, MacLachlan gave one young boy cocaine on a key and told him ‘not to grass’. She also supplied the Class A drug to a teenage girl and offered her amphetamine, Mr Parker added.
When questioned by police Downing initially lied but later told them MacLachlan had brought cocaine to the house and they had both used it.
MacLachlan told officers she had bought a bag of cocaine in the pub which she used with Downing at her house.
Downing, of Hermitage Street, Rishton, admitted knowingly permitting her premises to be used for the supply of cocaine and the offer of amphetamine.
MacLachlan, of Cliff Street, Rishton, admitted being concerned in the supply of cocaine and offering to supply amphetamine.
Robert Elias, defending MacLachlan, said she was ashamed, upset and ‘dismayed’ by her actions.
He added: “Her crime is when asked if she could 'sort out' a teenager, foolishly she provided a small amount of cocaine to a teenage boy. Any right thinking parent hearing that behaviour would be horrified. It’s dreadful, disgraceful behaviour.”
Sukhdev Garcha, defending Downing, said she had stopped using drugs and quit her job as a support worker alongside Social Services following the offences.
He described her drug use as a ‘blip’ at a time when she was suffering work stress and experiencing difficulties with neighbours after moving to rented accommodation. He said: “This young lady made wrong decisions, wrong choices at a time when she was in a very dark place.”
Judge Ian Leeming QC suspended Downing’s two-year prison sentence and handed her an 18-month supervision order.