Driver who raced through a village near Rugby at up to 80mph as he tried to get away from the police has escaped being jailed by ‘a whisker’

He said he panicked when police asked him to pull over as he only had a provisional licence and was uninsured

Friday, 16th April 2021, 8:47 am
Updated Friday, 16th April 2021, 8:48 am

A driver who raced through a village near Rugby at up to 80mph as he tried to get away from the police has escaped being jailed by ‘a whisker.’

Karl Gibbs, who Warwick Crown Court heard was trying to escape because had only a provisional licence and was uninsured, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving.

Gibbs (36) of Churchill Avenue, Kenilworth, was sentenced to eight months in prison suspended for 18 months and was ordered to do 200 hours of unpaid work and to pay £150 costs.

Karl Gibbs

Prosecutor Jaspreet Dhaliwal said that on December 18 last year police officers on patrol received information about a Fiat Punto suspected of being on false number plates.

They saw the car being driven by Gibbs on the A45 heading towards Dunchurch, at 7.50 in the morning, so began to follow it.

Gibbs joined the M45, but then came off back onto the A45 and headed towards Willoughby, at which stage to officers put on their blue light to indicate to him to pull over.

At first there was no response, but Gibbs then suddenly overtook two vehicles ahead of him and accelerated away.

On the approach to a crossroad near Willoughby, where there was a 50mph speed limit, he went into the middle of the road to overtake a line of vehicles at 80mph.

Gibbs then drove through the village of Braunston at 70-80mph, overtaking into the path of oncoming traffic.

As he left the village, Gibbs made a right turn onto a single-track road where he came to a stop, got out of the car and tried to escape on foot.

He ran into a wooded area, but was caught and arrested.

When he was questioned, Gibbs said that when he saw the police car’s blue lights he had panicked because he had only a provisional licence and was uninsured.

Sentencing Gibbs, who was also ordered to take part in a rehabilitation activity, Recorder Charles Falk told him: “You came within a whisker of going to prison today.

“I have only just felt able to suspend your sentence.”