Banned driver put behind bars for dangerous police pursuit through South Yorkshire streets

Shaun Mbayiwa, 23, of Lister Avenue, Rawmarsh, Rotherham was sentenced to nine months in prison during a hearing held at Sheffield Crown Court on Wednesday (August 15, 2018)
Shaun Mbayiwa, 23, of Lister Avenue, Rawmarsh, Rotherham was sentenced to nine months in prison during a hearing held at Sheffield Crown Court on Wednesday (August 15, 2018)
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A banned driver who raced through South Yorkshire streets at speeds of over 70mph in a bid to escape police has been jailed for nine months.

The attention of police officers patrolling near to St Ann's roundabout, Rotherham was drawn to defendant, Shaun Mbayiwa, at just after 4am on June 10 this year when they noticed the VW Golf vehicle he was driving did not have its headlights on.

Sheffield Crown Court heard how after pulling up behind Mbayiwa, 23, at a set of traffic lights, officers activated their sirens and indicated for him to pull over, but he sped away instead.

This prompted a six minute police chase, which only came to an end when Mbayiwa crashed the vehicle he was driving into a parked van.

Louise Gallagher, prosecuting, described how during the pursuit Mbayiwa ran red lights, reached speeds of 74 miles per hour (mph) and drove the wrong way down a one track lane while travelling at around 59mph.

"There seems to have been nothing coming in that direction at the time, but if there had have been it would have had no chance," Ms Gallagher told the court.

After crashing the VW Golf, the court heard how Mbayiwa hurriedly exited the vehicle and attempted to flee the scene, but was detained a short time later by police.

When arrested, Mbayiwa claimed he was only a passenger in the vehicle and said the driver had run off, the court heard.

Ms Gallagher described how he repeatedly refused to provide police with a breath sample so he could be tested for drink and drugs, and claimed he had fallen ill.

"He told the police: 'What would you do if I were to faint and pass out, what would you do then' and winked at them," said Ms Gallagher, adding: "It was then that he slid down the wall next to the custody suite, and started asking for a nurse."

Mbayiwa, of Lister Avenue, Rawmarsh, Rotherham has a number of previous convictions including possession of cannabis and driving whilst over the prescribed limit, which resulted in him being sentenced to a 12 month driving ban in September of last year, the court heard.

He pleaded guilty to charges of dangerous driving, using a vehicle without third party insurance, driving whilst disqualified, failure to provide a specimen and failure to stop at the scene of a road traffic accident at an earlier hearing.

Defending, Lucy Brown, said: "This defendant is very ashamed of the way he behaved on that occasion, and knows he can't justify, or explain, it."

She continued by saying that in the hours preceding the police pursuit, Mbayiwa had been drinking to 'drown his sorrows' over a miscarriage his partner had recently suffered.

"He received a phone call that his brother needed some assistance..and borrowed a friend's car," said Ms Brown, adding: "He knows little can be said about the driving. But it was short-lived and the roads were relatively quiet.

Judge Roger Thomas QC sentenced Mbayiwa to nine months in prison and banned him from driving for three-and-a-half years, after which time he will be required to take an extended driving test should he wish to hold a full license again.

As he sent him down, Judge Thomas told Mbayiwa: "This is a bad case of its kind, and cannot result in anything other than immediate imprisonment."