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Teenager’s driving ban after 20 people used road as race track

PUBLISHED: 15:56 05 July 2020 | UPDATED: 15:56 05 July 2020

Lee O'Brien received a driving ban for his part in the event Picture: ESSEX POLICE

Lee O'Brien received a driving ban for his part in the event Picture: ESSEX POLICE

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A teenager who drove a car with people on the roof before street racing has been banned from driving for a year.

People were carried on cars in the street race in Clacton last year Picture: ESSEX POLICEPeople were carried on cars in the street race in Clacton last year Picture: ESSEX POLICE

Essex Police were called to Stephenson Lane, on the Gorse Lane industrial estate in Clacton, on June 23 last year after reports of a group of 20 people using the road as a race track.

Twenty people were charged with offences relating to street racing, driving without insurance and careless driving.

All but one of these drivers were dealt with together at Colchester Magistrates’ Court in January, receiving a combined driving ban of more than 25 years between them and nearly £9,000 in fines and costs.

The final driver, Lee O’Brien, 18, was prosecuted separately due to charges of dangerous driving, in addition to the racing and no insurance offences he had also committed.

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O’Brien, of Clacton, was found guilty of all charges. He was bailed to Chelmsford Crown Court for sentencing and was disqualified from driving until then.

Last Wednesday, O’Brien was banned from driving for 12 months with an extended retest being required before being allowed to drive again.

He was also sentenced to a 12 month community order with 10 days rehabilitation activity requirement, as well as being instructed to participate in a Thinking Skills programme.

Investigating Officer Sgt Willsher, from the Chigwell Road Policing Unit, said: “This driver put not only himself at risk but numerous others by driving up and down the road with people on his roof, then allowing others to drive whilst he sat on the bonnet.
“He then took part in the subsequent racing, which all insurance policies specifically exclude from cover for obvious reasons.

“At one point a man on the roof of his car almost lost grip as the car turned a corner, with his legs and lower body swinging out.

“It is only luck that nobody was seriously hurt during this event, as has been seen in other parts of the country when car meets such as these go wrong and end in serious injuries or worse.”


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