Hungry driver in Leeds police chase as he went to buy Big Mac

A learner driver ploughed into a roundabout at 80mph during a police chase in Leeds as he drove to buy a Big Mac after a cannabis binge.

Saturday, 9th April 2016, 8:39 am
Updated Saturday, 9th April 2016, 8:41 am

Daniel Townend escaped serious injury despite losing control of his vehicle at high speed and his car rolling over before coming to stop.

Leeds Crown Court heard provisional licence holder Townend was spotted by police as he drove his Renault Scenic along Henconner Lane, Bramley. shortly after midnight on February 27 this year.

Officers signalled for him to stop but he increased his speed and overtook two scooter riders who were ahead of him.

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Townend, who had a passenger in the vehicle, reached 80mph in a 30mph zone shortly before the roundabout at the junction of Pudsey Road.

Vincent Blake-Barnard, prosecuting, said it was clear to officers he would not be able to negotiate the roundabout and lost control as he went straight over it.

The vehicle struck the kerb and rolled over two or three times before coming to a stop.

Townend was arrested at the scene. He was taken to hospital but did was not seriously injured.

Townend, a trained chef, told police he was on his way to McDonalds to buy a Big Mac after smoking cannabis. He said he panicked when he saw the officers as he knew he not allowed to drive the vehicle.

He pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, driving without a licence and having no insurance.

The court heard Townend had been smoking £100 of cannabis a week as he was “self medicating” after he suffered a family trauma.

Ian Cook, mitigating, urged Recorder Paul Isaacs to impose a community sentence so he could receive help.

He was given a six month prison sentence, suspended for 12 months, and made the subject of a 12 month community order, during which he must take part in a 30-day activity requirement. Townend was also banned from driving for 18 months.

Recorder Isaacs said: “You should think again before smoking cannabis and driving to McDonalds in the early hours of the morning.”