Teen's 90mph police chase 'beyond belief'

A TEENAGER drove at speeds of up to 90 miles an hour on the wrong side of the road during a police chase through Southampton.

Charles Hartup also drove through red lights and ignored road signs during the night-time pursuit, a court heard.

The drama ended when the 18-yearold crashed the stolen Ford Focus into the back of a parked car with such force he shunted it on to the pavement.

The high-speed chase was revealed when Hartup appeared at Southampton Crown Court when a judge described his driving as “beyond belief”.

It started when the teenager took a friend’s car on a misty night after she had let him stay with her because he had been kicked out of his home by his parents.

But in North Baddesley police spotted he was not using fog lights and flashed their lights to get him to stop.

Instead, said prosecutor Peter Spink, he accelerated away.

He told the court how Hartup drove at speeds up to 90mph, drove on the wrong side of the road, jumped red lights and ignored road signs.

The chase ended with Hartup smashing into the rear of another car with such force it was shunted on to the pavement, leaving its owner to fear it was a write-off.

Hartup, of Rowan Close, Southampton, admitted the aggravated taking and driving away of the Ford, dangerous driving, failing to stop and having no licence or insurance.

“What you did that night is beyond belief,” said Recorder Richard Onslow, giving him four months in a young offenders’ institution. “There was no care for other road users or occupants. Your behaviour was quite extraordinary and all because you were bored.”

In mitigation, Justin Hugheston- Roberts said: “He had not been drinking and can give no reason why he did it. It could have been toally devastating to others, fortunately more by luck than judgement nobody was hurt.”

Hartup, who was of previous good character, was also banned from driving for two years and told he must pass an extended re-test.

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