Man ‘lucky not to cause accident’ after speeding over bumps

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A Long Lawford man sped at 50mph over speed bumps through a residential area after police found he was using a mobile phone while driving.

Corin Woolman then shot across a main road with traffic lights on red against him before speeding along more residential streets and into Rugby town centre.

He was finally arrested after getting blocked in by other traffic, and at Warwick Crown Court he pleaded guilty to a charge of dangerous driving.

Woolman, 18, of The Rylands, was sentenced to four months detention suspended for 12 months, banned from driving for a year and ordered to take part in a probation programme and to pay £535 costs and an £80 surcharge.

Prosecutor Peter Grieves-Smith said that on July 20 the police were called to an address in Long Lawford at which Woolman was present over allegations which were not pursued.

As officers made their way to the scene, they saw Woolman driving a Peugeot 106 along the A428 towards Rugby.

Although he was not speeding, he was holding a phone to his ear, so they put on their blue light to stop him.

But instead of pulling over, he sped away and turned into Townsend Lane where, with the police giving chase along the residential road, he went over speed bumps at 40-50mph.

He continued along Townsend Lane before taking a left, a right and another left to get back onto the A428, without stopping at the junction, and headed towards Rugby.

He was overtaking other cars, once forcing an oncoming driver to stop to avoid a collision, and went so close to a cyclist that he caused the rider to wobble.

When he reached the A4071 junction, Woolman ignored a red light and went straight across before turning into Jubilee Crescent.

Woolman then sped along narrow residential streets before heading towards Rugby town centre, and was lucky not to hit people crossing as he went through more red lights.

He continued along Evreux Way and North Street at 45 before turning into Railway Terrace, but got blocked in by other traffic in Craven Road – and the police pulled up alongside and pulled him out of the car, added Mr Grieves-Smith.

David Everett, defending, said: “I accept it crosses the custody threshold, and will be setting out my stall as to why the court could suspend it.”

Mr Everett said Woolman had left his family’s home about a week before the incident because of problems between him and his father, and went to live with his grandmother.

On that day he had gone back to collect some of his things, and there was an argument over what he could take which led to ‘physical contact’ and he was shoved out of the house.

Outside he lost his temper and caused damage to his father’s car, and then drove away when he realised the police were being called.

The police then saw him and tried to stop him, and Mr Everett said: “Everything, in his words, crashed in his head after that, and he drove very badly.

“Fortunately no crash was caused and no damage was caused and no-one was hurt.”

Mr Everett said Woolman had joined the Army at 17, but left when he could not take his training any further because of his age – and he now works for a company which has provided him with “a glowing reference”.

Sentencing Woolman, Recorder Christopher Tickle told him: “I am quite familiar with the area in which you drove.

“Big junctions are dangerous, narrow roads even more so, and pedestrian crossings and traffic lights more so again; and you ignored all of those in a mad few minutes of dangerous driving.

“It is more by luck than judgement that there was no accident and no person was injured.”