Speeding driver’s car blew up during police chase

Teesside Crown Court.
Teesside Crown Court.

A driver who was leading police on a 60mph chase was forced to stop after his engine blew up.

Pursuing officers reported seeing smoke from a BMW driven by Martin Gordon before seeing the car grind to a halt, Teesside Crown Court heard.

Prosecutor Emma Atkinson said the chase began in the early hours and lasted for more than 10 minutes.

“During that time the car reached speeds of 60mph,” added Ms Atkinson. “The chase took in the residential Throston estate area of Hartlepool.

“The BMW was driven the wrong way around a roundabout twice, went through two red traffic lights, and was also driven on the wrong side of the road.

“It was driven across a grassed area and back onto the road before breaking down.”

“The arresting officers found a friction locking baton in the driver’s door pocket of the BMW.”

Gordon was taken to the police station where he refused to provide a specimen.

The court was told he has 28 previous convictions, but none for motoring offences.

Gordon, 37, of Raby Road, Hartlepool, admitted dangerous driving, possession of an offensive weapon, and failure to provide a specimen, all on October 18.

Martin Scarborough, defending, said in mitigation: “Mr Gordon took the stupid decision to drive after having a drink, and he panicked when he saw the police.

“He had not offended for three years, which shows he was keeping himself out of trouble.”

The Recorder, Mr David Dobbin, sentenced Gordon to 12 months in prison, suspended for 18 months, 200 hours of community work, and a rehabilitation activity requirement of 35 days.

Gordon was ordered to pay £1,000 in court charges, and banned from driving for 18 months.

The recorder told him: “This was undoubtedly dangerous driving, but thankfully it was in the early hours which meant no members of the public were specifically put at risk.

“You have managed to keep out of trouble for three years and have two young children .

“I am prepared to give you a chance to look after them by suspending the sentence.”

Gordon must take an extended driving test if he wants to drive after the ban expires.

The locking baton found in his car was confiscated and will be destroyed.