Portsmouth boy, 15, given 6 penalty points and criminal record for riding e-scooter on dual carriageway

A TEENAGE boy has been prosecuted after being caught riding an e-scooter he was given as a Christmas present.

By Ben Fishwick
Saturday, 14th August 2021, 4:55 am
File photo of a roads policing officer in Portsmouth. Picture: Ben Fishwick
File photo of a roads policing officer in Portsmouth. Picture: Ben Fishwick

The 15-year-old was on the private vehicle with another boy on a dual-carriage A road in Portsmouth when a police motorcyclist pulled them over in January.

It comes just days after Portsmouth councillors raised concerns about underage riders using e-scooters in the council-backed Voi trial.

Magistrates hearing the teenager’s case said the law around e-scooters leaves people ‘confused’ and ‘needs tidying up’.

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Picture posed by model

Portsmouth Youth Court heard the boys were warned that the vehicles - outside of the Voi trial - are illegal to ride in public and they should walk it along.

But prosecutor Lucy Paddick said just as the officer put his helmet and gloves back on after the five-minute roadside lecture, the boys were spotted again.

‘To his dismay he saw the same two riding the same e-scooter in the middle of (the road) this time with the defendant... riding,’ she said.

He pulled them over again, and this time the 15-year-old boy was riding it, having previously been the passenger.

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The officer seized the e-scooter and reported the boy, who was 14 at the time, for driving without a licence or insurance. The boy admitted both offences in court.

‘I bought it online as a Christmas present literally three weeks beforehand,’ the dad said.

‘I bought it off an auction site so I had no knowledge of the laws - all his friends were on it.’

He added: ‘I see 30-50 people on them every single day, and not the hired ones, and they’re on the roads every day.’

The dad said his son had been ‘forgetful’ and getting on the e-scooter ‘wasn’t a disrespectful thing’.

Magistrates heard it cost the man £190 to get the e-scooter back from the Boarhunt impound and it stopped working after a couple of weeks.

Magistrate Martin Horn imposed six penalty points on the boy’s driving record.

When he applies for a licence at 17 his points will last for three years, the court heard.

Mr Horn said: ‘We’re all a bit confused about what we can and can’t do and the law needs tidying up - but that’s for other people to do.’

The boy’s dad must pay a £17 victim surcharge after his son was handed a six-month conditional discharge.

‘I hope you’ve learnt your lesson today and hopefully we never see you in these courts again,’ Mr Horn told the boy. ‘Behave on those roads.’

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