Banned driver sped through Hartlepool to avoid police

The case was heard at Teesside Crown Court.
The case was heard at Teesside Crown Court.

A banned driver who led police on a high speed chase just three days after crashing into another driver has been locked up.

Peter Murphy drove at speeds of up to 60mph through residential roads where the limit was 30mph in a desperate bid to evade the law.

Murphy, 44, failed to stop for a police car on Eaglesfield Road at about 8.30pm on February 25.

Prosecutor Emma Atkinson told Teesside Crown Court: “He failed to stop and drove on Wynyard Road on the wrong side of the road where he overtook moving vehicles.

“Officers described him driving at speeds of 60mph in a 30mph zone.”

Murphy, who was driving a blue Fiat Punto, continued through Erskine Road, Dalkeith Road and Fordyce Road at about 40mph.

Miss Aktinson added: “He failed to slow down for the officer and was described as weaving through parked vehicles.”

He was found hiding in the car in Erskine Road.

Just three days earlier, Murphy had previously committed dangerous driving.

While driving a Vauxhall Corsa, he collided with a Ford Cougar on The Front at Seaton Carew causing damage to a door and wheel trim.

The driver tried to give chase but lost Murphy and the car was later found abandoned.

Murphy drove dangerously on roads including Tees Road, Seaton Lane, Rossmere Way, Catcote Road, Kilmarnock Road and Glamis Walk.

He was identified after McDonald’s wrappers were found in the abandoned Corsa and police studied CCTV from the takeaway in Burn Road.

Murphy, of Willowfields, Hartlepool, pleaded guilty to two counts of dangerous driving and two of driving while disqualified.

He also admitted two offences of driving without insurance, failing to stop after an accident, and failing to report an accident to police.

He had previously been banned from driving in 2011 and last September.

Stephen Constantine, mitigating, said: “Mr Murphy accepts his driving fell way beyond the requisite standard.

“Perhaps more by luck than good management it would appear no damage was caused to any property nor any injuries occurred to any person or any other road user.”

Mr Constantine appealed to the judge to keep the inevitable prison sentence as short as possible as he plans to get married, and it is intended he will take over his dad’s bakery business as he is ill.

Murphy, of Westfields, Hartlepool, was jailed for eight months and was told he will be released on licence after serving half of the sentence.