A MAN has been jailed for 10 months for an ‘appalling piece of dangerous driving’ during which he reached more than 100mph in the Cotswolds.
Lee Wilkes, 34 of Mill Road, Waterlooville, Portsmouth, was spotted by a police patrol officer at around 4.30am on May 1, this year on the A417 at Birdlip.
Prosecutor Nicholas Lee told Gloucester Crown Court on Friday: “The officer thought there was something suspicious about the vehicle when the automatic number plate reader flagged up that it was not taxed.
“He followed the car, which was being driven sensibly behind two lorries, onto the A436 after the Air Balloon Roundabout, when he put on the blue lights to indicate to the driver to pull over into a layby.
“However the driver decided instead to speed away, overtaking the two HGVs, and this began a police pursuit in which he broke speed limits and drove on the wrong side of the road on blind corners.
“The two-minute chase exceeded 100 mph in places and came to an end when Wilkes lost control of the vehicle and stopped.”
The court was told that the police vehicle stopped in front of it to prevent it being driven away but the driver ran off into the night leaving his woman passenger behind.
“Additional police officers and a dog handler arrived on the scene shortly afterwards and found Wilkes about 100 yards away,” said Mr Lee.
“He was given a roadside breath test in which he tested positive for excess alcohol. He was taken to Gloucestershire Police’s custody suite but failed to give any further samples for analysis.”
The court was told that Wilkes was bailed to appear before Cheltenham Magistrates Court later in May but failed to turn up.
He eventually pleaded guilty to dangerous driving and other offences on October 9 and the magistrates sent the case to the crown court for sentencing.
Wilkes admitted dangerous driving, driving without insurance and while disqualified and refusing to give a breath sample.
James Haskell, defending said: “He acknowledges that he will be receiving a prison sentence for what he describes himself as an appalling piece of dangerous driving.
“He had a bad record for driving offences, but is genuinely remorseful about his latest offence.”
The judge sentenced Wilkes to 10 months in jail and suspended him from driving for three years and five months.
He ordered that Wilkes should take an extended driving test to get his licence back.