Dangerous South Yorkshire driver sped down pedestrian gennel during police pursuit

A dangerous driver sped through junctions and down a pedestrian gennel while he was being pursued by police.

Tuesday, 12th January 2021, 10:34 am

James Duffy, aged 28, of Littleworth Lane, Barnsley, was spotted by police driving a Renault Clio with a passenger and false registration plates before he fled from Park Road, Barnsley, without giving way at a junction causing another vehicle to stop, according to a Sheffield Crown Court hearing.

Brian Outhwaite, prosecuting, told the hearing on January 11 that Duffy pulled away at speed and went on Duke Street and Agnes Road without stopping or giving way and another vehicle had to stop quickly to avoid a collision.

The Clio reached 40mph in a 30mph zone and it sped into another junction without stopping or slowing down before going through a gennel and drove on a number of roads in excess of 30mph before stopping, according to Mr Outhwaite.

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A dangerous driver has been given a suspended prison sentence after he sped down a pedestrianised gennel during a police pursuit.

Mr Outhwaite said: “Officers approached the vehicle and fearing they might drive off again officers broke a window of the car and switched off the engine.”

Duffy, who has previous convictions, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, failing to stop, driving without insurance and to driving while unfit through drugs after he was found to have ketamine in his system after the incident on February 15, 2020.

Jessica Randell, defending, said: “The defendant explained why he was driving on the day in question in that he had lost his job as a scaffolder in January, 2020, and was unable to afford insurance and wanted to take his girlfriend to work on the night in question.”

She added Duffy has said this was a mistake and he is remorseful and wishes to turn his life around and stay out of trouble.

Recorder Felicity Davies told Duffy: “You failed to stop at a giveway causing another motorist to have to avoid you and the police followed you and you did the same again and there was then a pursuit.”

She added Duffy had been driving with false plates to avoid being caught without insurance.

Recorder Davies sentenced Duffy to four months of custody suspended for 12 months with a Rehabilitation Activity Requirement and 150 hours of unpaid work. Duffy was disqualified from driving for 12 months.

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