Driver avoids after panicking and fleeing police

Bradford Crown Court
Bradford Crown Court

A panicking driver who phoned her dad as she tried to get away from a pursuing police car has narrowly avoided going straight to jail.

Naomi Wilson, 29, sped away from officers when they pulled alongside after a routine check suggested she was not insured to drive the car she was in.

The pursuit, which began near the Odsal roundabout in Bradford, lasted about 15 minutes and a judge said it was a minor miracle that no-one was seriously injured or killed.

Prosecutor James Weekes told Bradford Crown Court that uninsured Wilson had a male passenger in the car as she overtake other motorists at speed and ran 10 sets of red lights on her way back to her home in Dean Court, Halifax.

Mr Weekes said Wilson, who didn’t have a full licence, drove the wrong side of bollards and forced her way through traffic during the early evening pursuit seven weeks ago.

On Huddersfield Road Wilson used the “ahead only” lane to overtake stationary vehicles before turning right across them at the junction.

Mr Weekes said during the pursuit Wilson telephoned her father who said she was screaming and asking him what she should do.

Her father advised her to stop and pull over, but a male voice could be heard telling her to “put her foot down”.

When Wilson finally reached the Dean Court area she tried to run off, but was caught by police officers.

She told the police: ”I should have stopped. I panicked.”

Back in 2002 Wilson was convicted of driving without insurance or a licence and Judge Jonathan Rose said that was a warning to her.

The judge said Wilson had been “driving like a mad woman” and she deserved to go to prison.

But the judge said he had to take account of Wilson’s own difficulties and the fact that her mother relied on her.

Wilson was given a six-month prison sentence, suspended for two years, after she admitted charges of dangerous driving, driving without insurance and a licence and failing to stop.

Judge Rose said he would have preferred to make her do unpaid work as a punishment, but she was not suitable to do that so he imposed a four-month electronically-monitored curfew between 7pm and 7am.

Wilson, who was banned from driving for 18 months and ordered to take an extended re-test, will also have to comply with a rehabilitation activity requirement.

“The fact that you panicked may explain why you drove like an idiot but you wouldn’t have panicked if you had not been driving and you shouldn’t have been driving,” the judge told Wilson.