Unlicenced driver who led police on a high speed chase in South Tyneside keeps his freedom
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Officers had tried to pull over Dalton Chisholm, who was behind the wheel of a Susuki Vitara, on Prince Edward Road, South Shields, on April 29 last year.
Newcastle Crown Court heard instead of coming to a stop, Chisholm drove off towards Temple Park and Cleadon.
Prosecutor Joe Culley told the court: "He drove dangerously in a number of respects, including reaching 80mph in a 40mph zone on more than one occasion, travelling on the wrong side of the road on a number of occasions, including while approaching a junction, crossing lines repeatedly and at one point reaching 65mph in a 30mph zone."
Mr Culley said the Vitara collided with the side of another car before Chisholm and a male passenger fled the vehicle on foot.
Chisholm, who held just an expired provisional licence and was not insured, was caught hiding in bushes.
The 23-year-old, of Wiltshire Road, Sunderland, admitted dangerous driving.
Annalisa Moscardini, defending, said Chisholm "panicked" and added: "He can't really explain his actions."
Miss Moscardini said Chisholm has family responsibilities and hopes to secure employment.
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Judge Robert Adams told him: "You panicked when you saw the police car, assuming they were stopping you because you were uninsured.
"You accept driving recklessly for 25 minutes, attempting to get away.
"You said it is the stupidest thing you have done, which I hope is right."
Judge Adams said Chisholm had come "very close" to going to prison but accepted he was "remorseful and fully regretted it" and told him: "You are getting a chance today."
Chisholm was sentenced to 12 months, suspended for 18 months, with rehabilitation and programme requirements and 120 hours unpaid work.