Reckless driver avoids jail after people forced to dive for cover during rampage

A TEENAGER who pretended his vehicle was a police car went on the rampage '“ causing people to dive for cover to avoid being hit by his reckless driving.

Wednesday, 2nd January 2019, 3:32 pm
Updated Thursday, 10th January 2019, 11:32 am
The teenager pretended his vehicle was a police car by putting a fake sign on it

But despite leading police on a car chase where lives were put at risk in Waterlooville, serial offender Jason Stanley, 18, avoided being sent to jail '“ despite also admitting a number of other vile crimes.

Portsmouth Crown Court heard how Stanley was seen driving a Vauxhall Astra in February last year along Milton Road while beeping and flashing at other cars in his vehicle that had a false police sign on it.

A member of public reported the car after suspecting it was a fake '“ sparking a chase from officers after they located the vehicle.

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The teenager pretended his vehicle was a police car by putting a fake sign on it

Prosecutor Martyn Booth told the court: '˜The police located the car near the defendant's Lovedean Lane home and saw that he was the driver of the car. As police approached the defendant and tried to get him to stop he looked panicked before he drove off into a dirt track.

'˜A female walking her dog had to get out of the way. Police continued to follow the car but could not travel at speed as it would have been dangerous.'

In a desperate attempt to throw police of his trail, Stanley then went off the track and over a bump and onto a footpath where there were two elderly people walking their dog. '˜They were shocked and fearful to see a car suddenly come up behind them at speed before it disappeared through the undergrowth,' Mr booth said.

Police had to give up the chase before the car was found in Dark Close.  

Stanley was later arrested after police had identified him when driving the car. When quizzed, the defendant only replied '˜no comment' apart from providing a statement where he denied he was the driver of the car.

The court heard how Stanley, who was previously disqualified from driving for 16 months, suffered with serious mental health issues which had impacted on further offences in October last year where he was discovered with a belt around his neck.

'˜He was lying on the floor when he woke up and became abusive and threw a punch at a paramedic,' Mr Booth said. '˜When police arrived they tried to restrain him before he struck out and spat at them before kicking the doors of the police van and shouting abuse.'

On a separate occasion in November, Stanley was part of a mob who stormed into McDonald's in Elettra Avenue, Waterlooville, before throwing food and unleashing a torrent of abuse and threats at staff.

Defending Rob Harding said Stanley's offending was a result of  '˜stupidity rather than criminality'. He said the defendant was '˜ashamed' of his behaviour but was taking steps to address his demons.

Judge Timothy Mousley QC spared Stanley prison after admitting he had '˜taken steps to sort his life out'. Instead, the defendant was sentenced to 10 months jail suspended for 18 months, ordered to complete 175 hours unpaid work and 15 rehabilitation days, disqualified from driving for 12 months and told to pay compensation of £250.

Stanley had pleaded guilty to dangerous driving and having no insurance, using threatening words and behaviour, and two charges of assault.