A man who led officers on a high-speed pursuit through Calne that ended in a collisioN escapes prison sentence

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A man who led officers on a high-speed pursuit through Calne that ended in a collision with a horse box has been given a two-year community order and disqualified from driving for two years.

Julian Drew, 31, from Melksham, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, driving without a licence, driving without insurance and possession of crack cocaine last month.

He was sentenced at Swindon Crown Court on Monday (12/10) to a two-year community order which includes 100 hours of unpaid work, 19 Thinking skills sessions and 20 rehabilitation activity requirement (RAR) sessions.

On the afternoon of July 31, 2020, officers were parked on an unclassified road adjacent to the A3102 when they spotted a blue Vauxhall Zafira believed to be driven by an uninsured driver.

As they approached behind, the car overtook several vehicles dangerously before failing to stop for police.

The car continued to overtake vehicles before hitting a small traffic island, at which point officers aborted the pursuit due to the manner of the driving.

Officers were able to re-engage with the pursuit, with the Zafira continuing at excessive speed and continuing to fail to stop.

The pursuit continued onto the A4 London Road where the Zafira reached speeds of 70mph in a 30mph zone and hit a road closed sign as it continued to evade police.

As the car turned onto Wessington Park, it mounted the pavement to try and pass a stationary horse box and became wedged between a low brick wall and the box.

Drew attempted to escape through the driver’s side window but, following a pursuit on foot, was detained and arrested for failing to stop and dangerous driving.

Once arrested, Drew’s behaviour led to a specimen being taken which indicated he was under the influence of cannabis and cocaine. A further search was carried out where he was found in possession of a piece of purple plastic which contained two small white rocks of crack cocaine.

PC Luke Hobbs, of the Roads Policing Unit, said: “Despite holding no licence or insurance, Drew drove without hesitation or consideration of other road user’s safety and the manner of his driving placed everyone at great risk and it is only through luck that nobody was injured.

“The horse box that the car collided with was carrying a horse at the time but fortunately it was not injured but was in great distress.

“This highlights the dangers of getting behind the wheel under the influence of drugs or alcohol and we will always take a zero tolerance policy when it comes to bringing those who take such a risk to justice.”

Anyone wishing to report an incident of drink/drug driving should call Wiltshire Police on 101.