Man jailed for 18 months for driving dangerously - St Albans

03/12/2013

Adam Hughes was told by a judge that he had "driven like a lunatic" when he tried to get away from the police.

Hughes, 20, reached speeds of up to 120 miles per hour and went through red lights before being finally arrested after hitting railings, a lamp post and police cars near Hertfordshire University.

He was driving the silver Ford Focus, which had been taken from Lincolnshire, and had with him a 17-year-old girl and a 15-year-old boy as passengers, St Albans Crown Court heard today, Tuesday, 03 December 2013.

Prosecutor Kevin West said the car had been reported stolen and was spotted by the police on the A1M at Baldock. Hughes was to later say he had been going to see his grandma who lives at Feltham in Middlesex.

When the police ordered him to stop, Hughes drove on reaching speeds of up to 120 miles per hour as he swerved through the traffic and used the hard shoulder to get away.  He came off the motorway at junction 6 at Welwyn before rejoining the road and leaving again at junction 3. After clipping the wing mirror of a Mercedes, he drove into Hertfordshire University car park and found he was blocked in.

"He rammed two police vehicles, hit a fence, hit two other police vehicles and a lamp post. He attempted to get out and run away and had to be Tasered twice before he was arrested. The police pursuit lasted half an hour and the Focus had to be written off, "said Mr West. The damage caused was put at £5,000.

Hughes, of Bridge Road, Sutton Bridge, Lincolnshire, pleaded guilty to aggravated vehicle taking, dangerous driving, driving while disqualified and having no insurance on 02 November this year.

He had been sentenced for dangerous driving at Lincoln Crown Court in April last year.

Andrew Kerry, defending, said Hughes had not been the one who was responsible for taking the car from the house in Lincolnshire. He asked for credit for his early guilty plea and said that he had been attacked twice since being remanded at Bedford prison. He said Hughes was being kept on the vulnerable person's wing.

Judge Andrew Bright QC told him: "You drove like a lunatic and you drove the car a very long way." He sentenced him to 18 months in custody, banned him from driving for 2 years and ordered him to take an extended test before he can have his licence returned.

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