Banned driver refused drug test after police chase through Derby

This wild-eyed banned driver who was living in his car led police on a “cat and mouse” chase through Derby.

Ross Hodgkinson made hand gestures and threw a “zombie” knife out of the window in his bid to escape.

Derby Crown Court heard how the 31-year-old went through five sets of red traffic lights, strayed on to the opposite carriageway and took a blind bend on the wrong side of the road.

That manoeuvre saw an oncoming vehicle have to swerve to avoid a collision.

Then, when officers tried to block him in, on Uttoxeter New Road, he crashed into one of the patrol cars.

Jailing Hodgkinson for 12 months, Judge Shaun Smith QC said: “You started by playing cat and mouse with them and you initially thought you were having a good time leading them on a merry dance.

“But things then took a more serious turn on Staker Lane when you took a blind bend on the wrong side of the road and another vehicle had to swerve to avoid colliding with you.

“You tried to get away even after going over the stinger device and you crashed into at least one police car when they tried to box you in.”

Sarah Slater, prosecuting, said the incident took place in the city centre in the early hours of September 8.

She said just after midnight, police spotted a car being driven slowly in Bradshaw Way and the pursuing officer activated his blue lights and was joined by other officers.

Miss Slater said: “The first officer is told to stop his pursuit and another another officer follows from Bradshaw Way and catches up with him on Lara Croft Way.

“The defendant is driving really slowly, swerving across the road and trying to stop officer getting in front of him.

“He goes through at least five sets of red traffic lights, stops in middle of junctions and starts making hand gestures to police out of the window.

“He then starts to throw things out of the window including a black handled knife on Rykneld Road.

“The defendant drives towards the A38 but then swerves down an unlit road – Staker Lane.

“On Staker Lane he goes on the wrong side of the road, round a blind bend where a vehicle is coming the other way and has to take evasive action.

Miss Slater said at that point the police deployed a stinger device but that did not stop Hodgkinson, who drove on flat tyres back in the direction of the Royal Derby Hospital.

She said by now a total of four police cars were following him, all with blue lights and sirens but he doesn’t stop.

Miss Slater said: “They try to box him in Uttoxeter New Road, he gets round, so they try again and are able to stop him but he collides with police when he does so.

“He tries to resist when they detain him and his demeanour is such that officers believed the defendant might be on drugs or alcohol.

“At the police station he gives a negative test to alcohol but then he refuses to have a drug test saying ‘I am not doing it’.”

Hodgkinson, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, driving while disqualified, failing to provide a specimen for analysis, driving without insurance, resisting a police officer and possession of a bladed article.

Christopher Brewin, mitigating, said: “In conference my client has asked if you might consider a suspended sentence but I guess that bird has flown?”

Judge Smith replied: “It has. What was it all about?”

Mr Brewin said: “Drugs, I’m afraid. Essentially mamba.

“At the time he was living in the car so he had the knife for his own protection.”

As well as the jail term, Judge Smith disqualified Hodgkinson for three-and-a-half years.


Courtesy of Derbyshire Live – Derby News