Car valeter gets ten months jail over 90mph joyride smash...and look at the trail of destruction he left behind (From Echo)
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Car valeter gets ten months jail over 90mph joyride smash...and look at the trail of destruction he left behind
3:50pm Wednesday 18th December 2013 in News
A JOYRIDER who ploughed through seven gardens and caused more than £51,000 of damage during a high-speed police chase has been jailed.
Kevin Austin, 27, of Seamore Avenue, Benfleet, was clocked doing speeds of 90 mph as he tore through the streets of Benfleet and Daws Heath on August 23 – in a BMW he was meant to be valeting.
He told Basildon Crown Court he had taken the car in a “moment of madness”
and the incident had been “the biggest mistake of his life”.
Judge Jonathan Black said he had no option but to jail Austin immediately and handed him a ten-month sentence.
The court heard Austin was employed as a valeter at a garage in Benfleet.
After work on August 23, he took the BMW he had been working on without the permission of the owner, without insurance and despite not having a driving licence.
At around 9pm he was clocked by an unmarked police car, driving without headlights.
They tried to pull him over but he sped off, leading them on a chase of speeds of up to 90mph, overtaking traffic on the wrong side of the road, on zebra crossings and on blind bends.
The court heard he narrowly missed a pedestrian on a zebra crossing.
He eventually lost control of the car on Daws Heath Road and ploughed 55 metres across seven front gardens, destroying vehicles and causing £51,000 of damage.
The court heard there was extensive damage to the BMW he was driving and that every single windowwas smashed.
Because Austin was not insured the home and vehicle owners would have to pay £300 each to the insurance bureau in excesses.
In mitigation a statement was read out in which Austin said: “It was a moment of madness, the biggest mistake of my life.”
The court heard that since the incident Austin had lost his job and friends and family had disowned him.
Sentencing Austin, Judge Black said: “The aggravating factors are the vehicle was driven dangerously over a long distance and because of the time of year, there could have been people in their gardens who could have been hurt.”
“This offence is so serious that only immediate custody can be imposed.”
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