Driver jailed for reckless journey

A MOTORIST who was involved in a 20-mile police chase after driving his van along the wrong side of a dual carriageway has been jailed for six months.Police were alerted after a shocked motorist travelling northbound on the A12 on the Wickham Market bypass saw Richard Byerley driving on the wrong side of the road in the early hours of January 12 this year, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

A MOTORIST who was involved in a 20-mile police chase after driving his van along the wrong side of a dual carriageway has been jailed for six months.

Police were alerted after a shocked motorist travelling northbound on the A12 on the Wickham Market bypass saw Richard Byerley driving on the wrong side of the road in the early hours of January 12 this year, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

When officers located the van on the outskirts of Woodbridge, it was back on the correct side of the road, said Robert Sadd, prosecuting.

An unsuccessful attempt was made to stop the vehicle at that point and again near the Martlesham Heath police headquarters.


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The van continued on its way and officers saw it was being driven erratically and was swerving across the road.

A police car blocked an exit on the road at Wherstead and a further attempt was made to stop Byerley by using a stinging device with spikes to deflate the tyres on his vehicle.

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Once again, Byerley failed to stop and carried on driving on the rims of his deflated tyres, said Mr Sadd.

At the junction of the A12 southbound to Colchester, officers again used the stinging device to try and stop Byerley and this resulted in him deliberately ramming the back of a police car.

Byerley rammed the police car a second time and this had caused the police driver to lose control of the vehicle and it spun round in the road.

The van eventually came to a halt after it became squeezed between the police car and the crash barrier.

Byerley, who has two previous convictions for drink driving and three for driving while disqualified, was arrested and refused to provide a specimen of blood for analysis.

Byerley, 36, of The Ordnance Hotel, Felixstowe, admitted dangerous driving, driving while disqualified, failing to provide a specimen of blood and driving without insurance.

Jailing him for six months and banning him from driving for three years, Judge Peter Thompson said Byerley's driving had been dangerous and reckless.

He ordered Byerley to pay £250 costs and said that his driving ban could be reduced by nine months if he completed a rehabilitation course.

Neelie Sharma, for Byerley, said her client had got into his car on the night in question to go to the aid of a friend who had asked him for help in an emergency.

“He was a knight in shining armour who didn't get it quite right. He is very sorry for what he has done,” she said.

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