Criminal fled police at 157mph in high speed stolen Seat Leon chase across Leeds

Damien Ward
Damien Ward
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A criminal drove at over 150mph in a stolen car as he tried to get away from police during a motorway chase.

Damien Ward put lives in danger during the high-speed pursuit along the A1(M) at Wetherby and on the streets of Leeds.

A court heard a number of police vehicles and the West Yorkshire Police helicopter were involved in the incident on December 8 last year.

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The 26-year-old was locked up for two-and-a-half years after judge Neil Clark told him: “This was a terrible piece of dangerous driving.

“As bad as one can imagine really.”

Leeds Crown Court heard a high-powered Seat Leon worth £32,000 was stolen from outside a house in Leeds on December 7 last year.

Officers spotted the vehicle being driven with cloned number plates on the A1(M) the next day at 10.45pm.

Ward reached 157mph as he tried to get away.

Heather Gilmore, prosecuting, said at one stage three police cars tried to block his path by occupying all three lanes.

Ward undertook the vehicles by driving onto the hard shoulder at 110mph and left the southbound carriageway.

He then drove dangerously through Leeds, driving on the opposite lane of a dual carriage and the wrong way along one-way streets.

Ward abandoned the vehicle on Embleton Road, Methley, after a 17-minute chase.

He dumped a bag containing tools and four pairs of latex gloves but was arrested nearby.

During interview Ward claimed he had borrowed the car from a Chinese man he claimed he was too afraid to name.

Ward said he had been ask to drive another man to Scotland and was returning home when he was spotted by police.

Ward, of Milne Lane, Sheffield, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, handling stolen goods, going equipped for theft, breaching a suspended sentence order, having no insurance and having no licence.

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Ward has previous convictions for burglary, possessing weapons, violence and drug-related offences.

Judge Clark said: “It was bad driving by a bad driver.”