100mph Leeds police chase driver panicked because passengers had drugs

Jeff Skinner, 21, drove his Citroen DS3 at over 100mph in a 40mph zone on Gelderd Road as police in an unmarked car struggled to keep up with him, Leeds Crown Court heard. The court was told Skinner was "frightened" when he saw blue flashing lights after he had overtaken a pick up truck in the wrong lane just after 9.30pm on October 7 2019. Carley Green, prosecuting, said police first saw Skinner's car on the A650 heading towards Morley and wanted to speak to him and the car was flagged up as having no registered keeper.

Gelderd Road, Leeds. Copyright: other

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Miss Green said Skinner turned left on to the A62 Gelderd Road and failed to stop for officers. He accelerated away from the unmarked police car and the officers had to travel at over 100mph in a 40mph zone and "struggled to keep up."

Skinner drove on to College Road and went on to the wrong side of the road and travelled at 50mph in a 20 mph zone during the short pursuit. Miss Green said Skinner turned on to cul-de-sac Turton Vale and did a handbrake turn, narrowly missing a parked car. Officers used the unmarked police car to block him in and there was a collision.

Police saw Skinner put the car into reverse before removing him from the car and arresting him. Miss Green said: "In interview he admitted to overtaking a 4x4 pick up truck in the wrong lane and said he saw blue flashing lights and was frightened. "He said he didn't realise he was going 50 in a 20 limit.

He agreed that his driving was dangerous, but stated that he was in control." Skinner, of Tong Lane End Farm, Westgate Hill Street, Tong, admitted dangerous driving. The court heard he has no previous convictions.

John Batchelor, mitigating, said: "He had two friends in the car with cannabis and momentarily lost his head and panicked." Mr Batchelor added: "When the defendant was disqualified he also lost his employment." Judge Christopher Batty handed Skinner a six month jail sentence, suspended for 18 months and ordered him to do 200 hours unpaid work.

Skinner must comply with a four month 8pm to 6am electronically monitored curfew and pay GBP85 prosecution costs.

He was banned from driving for two years.

Judge Batty told him: "What you did that night was really, really stupid.

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