A teenager who led police on a 19-minute, high-speed chase while his pregnant girlfriend screamed at him to stop has been locked up.
The van, in which his girlfriend was a passenger, then flipped onto its roof, Bradford Crown Court heard yesterday.
The court was told that Hewitt, 19, had done 50mph in a 40 zone; 60mph in a 30 zone; driven through Give Way junctions without stopping; gone the wrong way round roundabouts; sped through blind bends and travelled at 70mph down a narrow lane into Otley.
The judge, Recorder Edward Bindloss, said: “This was a prolonged piece of dangerous, bad driving. It was simply good fortune there was nobody injured or killed.”
Hewitt and his girlfriend – who was six months’ pregnant at the time – were not injured in the crash.
The chase started at 11.42pm on April 11 this year after police spotted Hewitt, who has never passed a driving test, speeding and he failed to stop for them. It finished at 12.01am when the van flipped onto its roof.
Recorder Bindloss added: “It is a miracle neither you, your partner or your unborn baby were injured.
“There was excessive speeding, it was of prolonged nature, and there was a vulnerable passenger who was screaming at you to stop and was scared to death according to the police report.”
In mitigation, the court heard that Hewitt was a reformed character after offending as a juvenile.
The court heard that Hewitt had shown remorse for his actions, though he could not explain why he reacted like he did on the night, but it was added: “perhaps panic”.
Hewitt, of Springs Terrace, Ilkley, had pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, driving without insurance and driving otherwise in accordance with a licence at a hearing on May 8.
Recorder Bindloss sent him to a young offenders’ institution for eight months and disqualified him from driving for two years.