A teenager has been locked up for 14 months for the most “outrageous” piece of dangerous driving that Bradford’s top judge has ever seen.

Jamie Ingham, who had never driven a car before, led police on an 18-mile pursuit at up to 90mph before crashing into a wall. The case prompted The Recorder of Bradford, Judge Jonathan Durham Hall QC, to label the maximum two-year jail sentence for dangerous driving “appallingly inadequate.”

Ingham, 18, of Holmfield Court, Thornton Road, Bradford, had just been given an impromptu driving lesson by his friend when he sped off in a “scrap car” at 3.45am on May 14.


Police on patrol in Bradford city centre saw him stalling the battered old Renault Clio four times on Croft Street, Bradford Crown Court heard today.

Prosecutor Paul Canfield played footage from a pursuing patrol car of the teenager accelerating away from the police, with three male passengers in the vehicle.

Ingham, who admitted dangerous driving, went 90mph down Canal Road and through Shipley and along the wrong side of the dual carriageway on the way to Baildon.

He jumped numerous red lights, narrowly missed an oncoming vehicle and swerved violently from side to side.

The 20-minute pursuit showed Ingham speeding over Baildon Moor, through Eldwick, and doing 60mph through the centre of Bingley.

I have never seen such appalling, deliberate, callous, prolonged dangerous driving” - Judge Durham Hall

He jumped five red lights on the way back to Bradford and led two patrol cars through Cottingley, Nabwood, Saltaire and Frizinghall.

Ingham, who was now being chased by three police cars, travelled along Daisy Hill Lane and on to Allerton Road before crashing into a wall.

Pursuing officers can be heard saying the Clio’s clutch was burning out and they thought it had a puncture.

Ingham can be see swerving to avoid two patrol cars lying in wait for him.

He went the wrong way round roundabouts and had to avoid an HGV pulling out of a junction.

Temitayo Oguntade, Ingham’s barrister, said he had no previous convictions.

She urged the court to sentence him to a community order a suspended term of custody.

“He accepts the risk that he posed to himself and others,” she said.

Miss Oguntade said that Ingham had gone down the wrong side of the dual carriageway because he did not know how to drive.

“It was an error of judgement on his part, down to naively showing off to his mates,” she said.

Judge Durham Hall, who sent Ingham to a young offender institution for 14 months, said: “This case demonstrates the appalling inadequacy of the court’s powers, again.”

The court, the public and members of Ingham’s family, sitting in the public gallery, had had to witness “an utterly appalling example of dangerous driving.”

In his long experience as a judge, the Recorder said: “I have never seen such appalling, deliberate, callous, prolonged dangerous driving.”

He told Ingham: “You were prepared to take any risks to avoid the police.”

The teenager had never driven a car in his life until he was given “an impromptu lesson from his mate in a car park.”

“It was an 18-mile pursuit, always over the speed limit, in a battered old car at up to 90mph,” Judge Durham Hall said.

It went almost as far as North Yorkshire, through built-up and country areas.

“You broke every conceivable rule,” the judge said, putting at risk the police officers doing their best to stop him.

He hoped that Ingham’s passengers, who “encouraged and directed” him would be prosecuted.

Ingham was banned from driving for four years and seven months.

“You are not fit to be behind the wheel of a car,” Judge Durham Hall said.