'Fool' high on cocaine takes wife's car and crashes into BMW in Portsmouth causing £5,000 worth of damage and landing him before court

A ‘FOOL’ who took his wife’s car while high on cocaine before crashing into a parked BMW leaving it with £5,000 worth of damage appeared in court.

By Steve Deeks
Thursday, 20th January 2022, 4:55 am
Updated Friday, 21st January 2022, 11:52 am

Self-employed roofer Chris Harvey, 34, took his wife’s BMW car while she was asleep before crashing into a parked car causing it ‘significant damage’.

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Portsmouth Magistrates’ Court heard how Harvey missed a lift to work in London before he ‘panicked’ and grabbed keys for his wife’s car to make the journey.

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Portsmouth Magistrates' Court. Picture: Chris Moorhouse portsmouth news breaking

Cocaine-fuelled Harvey, of Hawthorn Crescent, then smashed into the stationary car on Highbury Grove around 8am on May 28 last year.

Prosecutor Graham Heath told the court: ‘His partner was asleep and he took the car without her knowledge.’

He added: ‘He drove into a parked car. The damage to the parked vehicle was significant with around £5,000 worth of damage.’

The car belonging to Harvey’s wife was left with damage to the front wheel with the safety airbags also activated.

Chris Harvey leaving Portsmouth Magistrates Court after being sentenced

Police attended the scene with test revealing Harvey was intoxicated. He was found to have 325mcg of cocaine in his blood, exceeding the limit of 50mcg.

Harvey was arrested and went on to plead guilty to three offences at a previous court hearing. He admitted drug-driving, driving without insurance, and aggravated vehicle taking.

Saleem Chaudhry, defending, said Harvey made full admissions to the police at the roadside after his mistake.

‘He woke up late and missed his lift and panicked. He took the decision foolishly to take his wife’s car before the road traffic incident very close to the family home,’ he said.

The lawyer said Harvey had ‘self-referred’ as he sought help to beat his drug problem – with the incident sparking the defendant ‘to do something’ about his habit.

Mr Chaudhry said there were ‘no problems’ between Harvey and his wife, who was at court to support him.

Harvey, who had a conviction for possessing drugs with intent to supply in 2010, was handed a 12-month community order by magistrates, with the chairman of the bench saying the offences ‘didn’t pass the custody threshold’.

Harvey will have to complete 200 hours of unpaid work, was disqualified from driving for 12-months, and will have to pay £85 costs and a £95 victim surcharge.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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