Custody for terror driver

James Morrison has been sentenced to 15 months in youth custody after leading police on a car chase through Blackpool.
James Morrison has been sentenced to 15 months in youth custody after leading police on a car chase through Blackpool.
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A teenage tearaway who took a toddler on a drive of terror when he was involved in a high-speed chase with police has been sent to youth custody for 15 months.

James Morrison drove along pavements and grassed areas narrowly missing pedestrians, went through red lights and the wrong way round a one-way system in Blackpool, Preston Crown Court heard.

The 18-year-old had 53 previous convictions including dangerous driving, the aggravated taking of a motor vehicle and driving while disqualified.

The teenager, who was banned from the road at the time of the latest car chase on September 13, was described as having an appalling record and presenting a danger to the public by a judge.

Morrison, 18, of Rusland Avenue, Mereside admitted to driving dangerously while disqualified without insurance.

On the count of dangerous driving Morrison was handed 12 months’ youth detention, disqualified from driving for three years and seven and a half months and told he would have to take an extended retest.

For driving while disqualified he was handed three months’ youth detention to run consecutively and given a 12-month driving ban to run concurrently.

No separate penalty was given for driving without insurance.

At an earlier hearing at Blackpool Magistrates Court, District Judge Jeff Brailsford told Morrison: “Your record is appalling for someone of 18. You have 53 previous convictions, which include dangerous driving, the aggravated taking of a motor vehicle and disqualified driving.

“The risk and the danger that you presented in a sustained pursuit does not bear thinking about.”

The prosecution said police pursued Morrison, who was driving a Vauxhall Vectra dangerously on roads round Blackpool on September 13 at 10.45am. Morrison had a three-year-old child in the car at the time.

The court was also told Morrison had only just been released from youth custody at the time of the offence and persistently commits offences while on bail. .

The defence asked the judge to take into account the teen had pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity – but agreed his record was particularly bad.