A man has been jailed for seven years after stealing a car and then causing a crash in Chelmsford which rendered three people with "catastrophic and life-changing injuries".

Kevin Reed, 31, of Grafton Road, Dagenham appeared at Chelmsford Crown Court charged with a multitude of offences after he caused a crash that left one of the victims with a fractured spine and a bleed on the brain. 

Reed broke into a house in Linnet Drive in the early hours of Monday, October 31, 2016.

During the burglary a number of items were taken, including a Vauxhall Astra which Reed used to make off from the scene.

As he fled from the property, along the A414 Three Mile Hill towards the A12, Reed entered a roundabout at such great speed that he hit a Vauxhall Corsa, travelling around the roundabout, and sent it flying.

The Corsa managaed to flip over twice, owing to the force of the collision from the Astra, before it came to rest on the roundabout.

All three people in the Corsa suffered serious injuries.

The driver suffered a broken wrist, ligament damage to his right hand, kidney damage, whiplash and a blood clot to his right bicep. He also suffered a fracture to his spine and a bleed on the brain.

The rear passenger was left with two fractured vertebrae, one broken ankle and one fractured ankle, fractured ribs and had to use a wheelchair for 10 weeks.

The front passenger suffered a broken nose, cheekbone, ribs, and sternum, as well as bruising to his pelvis.

Reed made off from the scene.

Reed was interviewed at Grays police station on April 7 before appearing at Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court on June 28 where he was charged with burglary, theft and causing serious injury by dangerous driving.

On Tuesday, December 5, following a two day trial at Chelmsford Crown Court he was convicted of burglary, theft and causing serious injury by dangerous driving.

He was also convicted of common assault, breach of a non-molestation order, handling stolen goods, dangerous driving, driving under the influence of cocaine, driving under the influence of cannabis, driving with no insurance, driving without a licence and failing to surrender relating to two other separate incidents.

At the same court on Friday, December 8, Reed was jailed for seven years and banned from driving for seven and-a-half.

Investigating officer Detective Constable Claire Hicks said: “Kevin Reed has little regard for other people’s property or their safety and welfare.

“The three people in the Astra have all suffered catastrophic and life-changing injuries – one of them has had to give up their job as they can no longer stand for long periods.

“The impact of the crash was such that all three could’ve been killed.

“Reed’s actions were not only reckless but his response to the crash, running away from the scene, was cowardly.

“As a result it will be a long time before he’s allowed back on the roads. I hope he uses his time behind bars to reflect on the consequences of his actions.”