A THEOLOGY student who crashed into a bus stop during a police chase is the latest to be locked up as part of a crackdown on danger drivers in Bradford.
Salmaan Sidat, 19, pulled straight out in front of an unmarked patrol vehicle before accelerating away in a bid to outrun the law in a Peugeot 308 hire car.
Footage of the chase, which started in Old Road, Thornton, was played at Bradford Crown Court, and showed Sidat undercutting a car on a sharp right-hand turn, then losing control of the Peugeot which mounted a kerb and hit the bus stop, before he continued driving at speed, ignoring speed bumps and ‘Give Way’ signs.
Sidat, of Crow Tree Lane, Girlington, Bradford, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving in Weymouth Lane, Bradford Avenue, Saffron Drive, Grange Road and Chapel Lane, and driving without insurance, in the Peugeot hired by a colleague at the takeaway where he worked.
The court heard that Sidat was originally charged with aggravated vehicle-taking but the charge was dropped.
Prosecutor Dave Mackay said Sidat did a three-point-turn right in front of the police car at 6.50pm on January 27.
During the ‘blue light’ police pursuit, at more than 50mph in a 30mph zone, Sidat continued to accelerate away, after damaging the front wheel of the Peugeot when he struck the bus stop.
Mr Mackay said the pursuit went through a residential area before Sidat was finally blocked in by a police vehicle. He crashed into a parked car and ran off.
He made no comment when interviewed by the police.
His barrister, Ian Hudson, said the Peugeot was hired online on behalf of a work colleague. It was a four-door family car to be used for deliveries.
Sidat had attempted to insure it for himself and agreed to take his friend home in it. He had passed his driving test the previous August.
He took a wrong turn and panicked when he pulled right in front of the police car.
Sidat was studying theology in the hope of becoming a teacher, the court was told.
He was remorseful and assessed by his probation officer as at a low risk of reoffending.
But the Recorder of Bradford, Judge Roger Thomas QC, told Sidat: “You are yet another young man who I find in the dock in my courtroom charged with, and being sentenced for, dangerous driving.”
The judge said such cases were “too numerous to mention”.
“It is a real problem in Bradford and the attitude of the courts, picking up from the concern in the community, is to meet these offences with punishment.”
Sidat was sent to a young offender institution for four months and banned from driving for 14 months. He must take an extended retest to get his licence back.
“It is yet again this court sending out a message that this is the fate of young men, or people of any age, who drive dangerously in this city,” the judge said.
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