Drink-driver went through two red lights and overtook car on A14 slip road at Nacton

The A14 at Nacton

The A14 at Nacton

A 20-year-old man from Earl Soham who drove at speeds of up to 90 mph during a police chase on the A14 while he was twice the drink drive limit has been locked up for eight months.

Edward Harvey, who had only bought his white VW Golf the previous day, panicked when he realised police were following him and was chased for 20 minutes before he decided to stop, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

During the pursuit Harvey, of The Street, Earl Soham, crossed road junctions without stopping, crossed central road lines and drove at 60mph in a built up area, said Brian Reece, prosecuting.

Harvey, who has ambitions to join the armed forces, also went over two red traffic lights and overtook a vehicle on a slip road to the A14, the court heard.

As he drove over the Orwell Bridge the police car following him consistently recorded speeds above 80 mph and at one point reached 90 mph, said Mr Reece.


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He said that after crossing the Orwell Bridge Harvey appeared to realise he wasn’t going to escape and stopped on the Ransomes Industrial Estate.

Although he was initially pursued by one car a high speed police car had also joined in the chase, said Mr Reece.

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A breath test showed that Harvey was just over twice the drink drive limit.

A previous hearing heard that the chase started after police on patrol in Ipswich noticed a vehicle in Greenfinch Avenue at around 11.40 pm on March 7.

Harvey admitted drink driving with 72 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath and dangerous driving on Swallow Road, Hawthorn Drive, the A14 slip road and the Nacton exit.

Sentencing Harvey to eight months detention in a young offenders’ institution and banning him from driving for 18 months Judge Rupert Overbury told him:” This was a serious episode of dangerous driving. You deliberately chose to evade being stopped by the police and you drove at grossly excessive speeds in built up areas on a Saturday night at a time when people would have been leaving various establishments and making their way home.

“It was pure good chance that you didn’t cause serious injury or death to pedestrians in the area or other road users,” said the judge..

He ordered Harvey to take an extended driving test and to pay £200 costs.

Ian James for Harvey said his client hadn’t intended to drive in the night in question and was genuinely remorseful for what he had done.

He said Harvey had made a wrong decision by not stopping for the police and had learned his lesson.

He said Harvey had no previous convictions and was a hard working and well liked young man who hoped to join the armed forces.

“He is truly sorry for what he has done and understands why his behaviour is regarded so seriously by the courts,” said Mr James.

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