A Carlisle drug-driver who travelled at almost twice the speed limit on residential roads while chased by police has been spared an immediate jail term.
Jason John Riley’s Ford Transit van was seen on Warwick Road, just before 11.30pm on May 27 last year. It was travelling at speed and without headlights, prompting an officer to illuminate blue lights and follow.
Riley, 39, entered Eastern Way and Durranhill Road, cutting across the wrong side of a mini-roundabout and then a pedestrian traffic island before losing control and hitting a lamp post. Riley denied consuming drugs or alcohol, but blood tests later revealed the presence of both.
“He was travelling, the police estimate, between 50 and 60mph in a 30mph zone,” prosecutor Kim Whittlestone told Carlisle Crown Court, adding that Riley had been compliant as officers finally caught up with him.
Riley, of Brampton Old Road, Carlisle, admitted dangerous driving, no insurance and driving with the proportion of both cocaine and also the class A drug’s breakdown product – benzoylecgonine – above the legal limit.
After hearing mitigation and that Riley would do “absolutely anything” to avoid prison, Recorder Philip Grundy suspended a nine-month jail term for two years.
Riley must complete unpaid work, a rehabilitation requirement and a three-month night-time curfew, along with a three-year driving ban and an extended re-test.
The judge told Riley: “This is a high culpability offence with drugs, drink, aggressive driving and disregarding the warnings of police.”