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 ‘Panicked’ driver jailed after high-speed chase

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Number of posts : 29
Registration date : 2007-07-05

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PostSubject: ‘Panicked’ driver jailed after high-speed chase   ‘Panicked’ driver jailed after high-speed chase Icon_minitimeThu Jul 05, 2007 8:25 pm

An unlicensed and uninsured drive, from Isleworth, who led a police motorcyclist on a terrifying chase, has been jailed for a year.

Prolific offender Lewis Jeffs, 22, sped down narrow roads, jumping red lights and a level crossing before smashing into a brick wall and bouncing off a parked car.

He kept going before eventually abandoning the silver Peugeot, fleeing on foot and scaling a fence to escape.

He was arrested 12 days later after police identified him from CCTV images from a petrol station.

Jeffs, from Sunnywood Road, Isleworth, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, having no insurance and driving otherwise than in accordance with a licence when he appeared at Guildford Crown Court on Wednesday.

Maria Kariaskos, prosecuting, told the court that on April 1, Jeffs was in a silver Peugeot with his sister and her boyfriend on a garage forecourt in Egham Hill.

A police motorcyclist who had been filling up with fuel at the same time decided to follow.

Officers examined CCTV from the garage and recognised Jeffs, whose picture was circulated as wanted and arrested him on April 13. He refused to answer in subsequent questioning.

The court heard the wall cost £600 to repair and the parked car sustained damage costing £3,000.

Miss Kariaskos said he had 33 convictions for 54 offences and had served a number of sentences in young offenders' institutes.

His offences included dangerous driving, aggravated vehicle taking, driving while disqualified and taking vehicles without consent.

Alexandra Bull, for the defense, told the court that Jeffs had been given the Peugeot a week before and had been due to scrap it.

She said: "On the day, he saw the police officer and panicked, and rather than stopping and facing up to the situation he decided to try to flee the scene."

She said he had had a troubled background and began taking heroin and crack cocaine when he turned 20.

She said his focus was now on trying to get a job when he was released from custody.

Judge John Crocker also banned Jeffs from the road for three years.

He told him: "For somebody of your age, you have an appalling record for driving offences.

"In this case it is a miracle nobody was hurt. It is a miracle you were able to get out of that car. It was appalling driving. You realise that a custodial sentence is inevitable."
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