Former Royal Marine drove through Skegness at 85mph in desperate bid to give police the slip

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A former Royal Marine drove at up to 85 mph as he attempted to escape from pursuing police officers, Lincoln Crown Court was told.

Daniel Harwood drove through red traffic lights during the 50 minute pursuit and at one point went onto the wrong side of the road and drove around a set of traffic lights.

Harwood, of Roman Bank, Ingoldmells, admitted charges of dangerous driving, driving without insurance, driving without a full licence and failing to stop as a result of the incident on the evening of May 27.

He was jailed on Friday, October 7 for 10 months and banned from driving for two years and five months.

Judge Simon Hirst, passing sentence, told him: “It is fortunate that nobody was hurt by this appalling piece of driving. This offence is so serious that only an immediate custodial sentence can be passed.”

Gurdial Singh, prosecuting, said that Harwood attracted the attention of police when he jumped a red light as he drove along Richmond Drive, Skegness.

Officers activated the siren on the police vehicle but instead of stopping Harwood accelerated away and eventually officers lost sight of him on Algitha Road.

Mr Singh said that Harwood initially reached 50 mph in a 30 limit and then went up to 70 mph.

Officers caught up with Harwood again just after midnight.

Mr Singh said: “The defendant was seen to be driving erratically and swerving around on the wrong side of bollards and through a red traffic light.

“He was driving in excess of 85 mph. In a controlled stop the officers managed to bring the defendant’s vehicle to a halt and he was arrested.

“He was interviewed and admitted he had no licence or insurance.

“He said that as soon as the police activated their siren and blue flashing lights he panicked. He said he then got lost driving along back roads.”

James Gray, in mitigation, said that Harwood, who served with the Marines in Afghanistan, had since undergone a psychological assessment which produced some explanation for his behaviour.

Mr Gray said: “Part of his difficulty is that he acts irrationally.

“He has expressed his remorse and he pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity.”

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