Court told of reckless high speed drive

October 6, 2016 | By More

Police car-Sept2013-02A man has admitted seven charges arising from a dangerous high-speed chase across North Canterbury last month.

Police abandoned the pursuit of Kyle James Clarke, 23, amidst heavy traffic in North Canterbury, but eventually a police dog handler caught him at a property in Woolston.

Clarke, of Geraldine, pleaded guilty at the Christchurch District Court to unlawfully taking a car, recklessly driving it on the Northern Motorway, failing to stop for police, driving while forbidden, entering an enclosed yard, intentionally damaging a fence, and being found unlawfully in a building. He also admitted unlawfully entering a shed on another date.

Defence counsel Colin Eason said Clarke was willing to attend a restorative justice meeting with the people he had affected with his offending.

Judge Simon Menzies remanded Clarke in custody for sentencing on November 4. He asked for a pre-sentence report with a home detention report be prepared for then.

The police summary of facts said on September 15, at 6am, Clarke was at a property on Ashbys Road in Amberley.

With an associate, he entered an enclosed shed and drove off on a four-wheel motorcycle. They abandoned it on Harleston Road, Sefton.

They entered a property on Harleston Road where they were found by the owner. She took them to the Waikuku petrol station where the owner of the motorcycle saw them and tussled with Clarke.

Clarke ran down a driveway and found a car unlocked with the keys in the ignition. He drove it on State Highway One where police spotted him. They chased him and saw him driving on the wrong side of the road in heavy traffic, and passing other road users on the left.

Police abandoned the chase, but Clarke continued to drive at speed, passing cars in the face of oncoming traffic. He performed a U-turn and headed along Lineside Road, and at the intersection with the Northern Motorway he crossed the centre line and drove through a red light.

Clarke entered the north bound off ramp to Lineside Road and drove into the path of oncoming traffic, crossed both lanes of the northbound motorway into oncoming traffic, and drove over a grass strip in to the south-bound lane.

He continued on to Belfast weaving in and out of traffic and making erratic lane changes, and exited the motorway near Chaneys Corner

Clarke drove down a high grass bank and on to Marshland Road, travelling at high speed to New Brighton, where he drove across Rawhiti Domain, and then south on the grass verge of the estuary.

Along Dyers Road he approached extensive road works at speed, swerving around other road users and scattering road cones.

He drove through a wooden fence at Forest Hill Place, and through a small reserve, then abandoned the car on Cob Crescent, where a police dog handler tracked him to a garage.

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Category: Focus

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