A TEENAGER has been locked up after being caught by police after a chase on a stolen moped.

It happened in the early hours of August 27 when officers spotted 18-year-old Jayden Howard, of no fixed abode, on Otley Road and began following him.

Howard turned his lights off and a pursuit lasting around 15 minutes followed in which he drove at speed - breaking the limit - and ran red lights.

He appeared before Bradford Crown Court yesterday to be sentenced after pleading guilty to dangerous driving, driving without insurance and with a licence and obstructing a police constable.

The court heard police illuminated their lights and sirens, but Howard did not stop, instead going at 60mph on the 30mph road in the direction of Guiseley, drove on the wrong side of the road, swerved from side to side and ploughed through red traffic lights at 40mph.

He made his way back to Otley Road, driving towards some bollards towards the Idle area before running from the scene, but was caught by police after a foot chase.

The court heard he told officers he had been “forced by other people”, it was not his fault and gave a false name.

When his real name was found, it emerged he had no licence or insurance, while the moped was flagged as a stolen vehicle.

Officers could smell intoxicants on Howard’s breath – his speech was slurred – and Howard admitted he was in drink.

He claimed he had been at a party and was given the moped to find some more alcohol and cigarettes.

The court heard Howard, who has seven previous convictions for 15 offences including theft and going equipped, was wearing a balaclava at the time and Judge Richard Mansell QC said he was on the stolen moped because he was “up to no good” and suggested he was riding about identifying targets for theft or burglary.

The court heard he was “naïve and immature” with mental health problems, lack of a father figure and no longer able to live with his mother.

He left school at the age of nine, has no qualifications and believes he has ADHD. The court heard he is “ripe for exploitation” and does not understand the “slippery slope” he is on.

Paul Canfield, defending, said: “I suggest there’s some truth in the statement where he’s saying ‘I’m being forced to do things’.”

At the time of this offence, he was in breach of an 18-month community order he received after being racially abusive to officers while he was being arrested, hurling vile slurs at them. The judge revoked the community order and re-sentenced him to two months in a Young Offender Institute. He received a six-month consecutive sentence for the dangerous driving, with no separate penalty for the other offence and was disqualified from driving for a period of 15 months.

The judge told him: “You need to prepare yourself for life outside and decide which turn you want to make.”

He said he had to take some responsibility for his actions and added: “There will be help and guidance if you choose to take it.”