A banned driver has been described as ‘morally’ to blame for a crash between a police car following him and a motorbike, which left the rider with significant injuries, Lincoln Crown Court heard today (Thursday).
Martin Thompson, who was serving a nine-month driving ban, ignored an officer’s request to stop when he was seen behind the wheel of a car in Alford and drove away.
Lincoln Crown Court heard Thompson was then involved in a 15-minute pursuit during which he drove at 60 mph in a 30 limit area and at one point reached 80 mph.
The police vehicle which began following him was involved in a crash with a motorbike and another police car took over the pursuit which ended when Thompson abandoned the vehicle he was driving and made off.
Luc Chignell, prosecuting, said Thompson was arrested later after he was found with his partner in another vehicle.
Mr Chignell told the court that when Thompson was detained he told officers the crash with the motorbike would not have happened if he had not been chased.
The prosecutor said Thompson could not be legally held responsible for the collision but said: “The defendant was morally responsible for what happened.
“There was a collision between the police vehicle pursuing him and a motorcycle causing the motorcyclist significant injuries. He still didn’t stop even though he had seen the collision in his rear mirror. He carried on and other officers took over the pursuit.”
Thompson, 31, of Glentworth Crescent, Skegness, admitted charges of dangerous driving, having no insurance and driving while disqualified as a result of the incident on 9 June this year. He was jailed for 12 months and was banned from driving for three years and six months. He was also ordered to pass an extended retest before he can legally drive again.
Judge John Pini QC told him: “This collision would not have happened if there had been no driving while disqualified. Mortally you hold the blame for the collision but not legally.”
Joey Kwong, in mitigation, said Thompson had served a previous prison sentence and his decision to drive off when asked to stop was because he did not want to go back to jail.
He said: “He panicked. He wasn’t blaming the police when he said that if he wasn’t being chased it wouldn’t have happened.”
Mr Kwong said Thompson had been evicted from his rented home and decided to move the car to his mother’s address rather than leave it at his landlord’s property.
“He shouldn’t have done it. When the police started chasing him, he panicked.
“His best mitigation is that he not only pleaded guilty at the first opportunity but he also made admissions in interview.”
He said Thompson’s partner is due to give birth to her first child in November and urged that the defendant receive a sentence which means he is released from jail by the time of the birth.