Driver who rammed police car during high speed chase in Leeds is jailed

A driver who crashed into a number of cars before ramming a police car during a high speed chase in Leeds has been jailed.

Monday, 19th August 2019, 3:08 pm
Thomas Chalders drove the wrong way on the A64 York Road in Leeds. Image: Google.

Thomas Chalders drove the wrong way on the A64 York Road, went through red lights and drove over a roundabout, Leeds Crown Court heard.

The chase - which happened during busy morning rush hour traffic - ended when a police driver crashed his patrol car into into the Leon.

A Leeds Crown Court judge told 29-year-old Thomas Chalders, of Green Lane, Cross Gates, it was the worst piece of dangerous driving he had ever dealt with and that it was "a miracle" no-one was seriously injured.

Prosecutor, Anthony Moore said a pursuit started after Chalders failed to stop for police on Ivy Street in east Leeds just after 9am on December 12 2017.

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Mr Moore said Chalders drove through a no entry sign and went the wrong way down a one way street before failing to stop at the approach to Marsh Lane.

He did not stop at red traffic lights and drove on to York Road before driving the wrong way at high speed along Burmantofts Street.

Mr Moore said Chalders lost control at the junction of Torre Road and Lupton Avenue and struck and demolished two traffic bollards.

Mr Moore said Chalders again went through red traffic lights and drove on to York Road adding: "He drove through both lanes of traffic, colliding with several vehicles."

Chalders drove at 70mph in a 40mph zone on the A64 York Road towards Killingbeck before turning off and heading back the wrong way along York Road towards Leeds.

Police decided it was to dangerous to follow and drove the correct way along the A64.

Chalders rammed the police car head on at speed before driving off along St Alban's Approach, where he drove over a mini roundabout.

Mr Moore said Chalders was attempting to drive the wrong way on to the A64 slip road when the police driver crashed the patrol car into the back of the Leon, causing it to stop.

The collision caused the police car to hit and dfemolish a set of traffic lights.

Police smashed a window to get ito the Leon and arrested Chalders.

One of the two officers involved in the pursuit suffered rib, knee and back injuries.

The court heard thousands of pounds worth of damage was caused to the police car.

Chalders, who admitted dangerous driving, told a probatioon officer he had borrowed the car from a friend and did not have a driving licence or insurance.

Mitigating, Imran Khan, said: "He says he simply panicked and reacted badly. He is very sorry."

Jailing Chalders for 10 months, Judge Geoffrey Marson QC told him: "This is the worst piece of dangerous driving I have ever dealt with ."

Judge Marson added: "You collided with the police vehicle, you drove through red lights - it's a miracle nobody was seriously injured."

Chalders was banned from driving for three years.