Cumbria

Carlisle speeding motorist drove 'like a maniac'

Carlisle Crown Court
Image caption The judge at Carlisle Crown Court said it was "a fluke" Luke Whitfield was not facing a more serious charge

A motorist "drove like a maniac" through Carlisle city centre while police gave chase, a court has heard.

Luke Whitfield hit 73mph in a 30mph zone, ran red lights, and overtook on a blind bend with oncoming traffic.

A police officer said there were "several incidents during the pursuit that could have ended in fatality".

The 20-year-old admitted dangerous driving and was sentenced to an eight-month term suspended for two years by a judge at Carlisle Crown Court.

Whitfield, previously of Wigton Road, Carlisle, and now living and working as a chef in Scotland, was also ordered to complete 30 days' rehabilitation, serve a two-year driving ban and sit an extended re-test.

'Risk to others'

The court was told Whitfield was driving a BMW with three passengers on the evening of 8 September.

He had attempted to evade police as he wrongly thought he was not insured.

Judge Andrew Jefferies QC said Whitfield had been "driving like a maniac".

"Not only were you a risk to yourself, you were a risk to the passengers in your car; you were a risk to other road users and you were a risk to any pedestrians.

"It is fluke - and fluke alone - that you are not sitting there facing something much more serious than the charge you are."

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