A man who was caught driving at 145mph with a dog on his lap was given a 14-month jail sentence and banned from driving for five years.
45-year-old Alan Richardson went out in his Audi A3 to find his Tibetan terrier, which had escaped from his home through a bay window. The HGV driver managed to find the dog and was approached by an unmarked police car on the way home.
Reports say Richardson, who was over the legal alcohol limit, tried to flee. He then drove through built-up areas above the speed limit, drove on the wrong side of the road and went around a roundabout the wrong way.
During his attempt to escape he clocked a whopping 145mph with the dog on his lap, according to reports. The pursuit lasted twenty minutes and no one was hurt.
Richardson of Lindisfarne Avenue in Stockton claimed he was worried he was about to be “carjacked or robbed” and drove away in panic.
At Teesside Crown Court, Judge Simon Bourne-Arton QC told Richardson: “This is as bad a piece of dangerous driving as I’ve come across. What you did was drive in an exceedingly dangerous fashion over a prolonged period and over a prolonged distance.
“You knew you had too much to drink. Looking for a dog is no excuse for you getting into a car in that condition. Very soon after the pursuit you were aware you were being pursued by a police car, and you could and should have stopped.”
He added: “You exposed members of the public to serious risk, if not death.” Richardson admitted dangerous driving and being over the limit.
The judge is said to have taken Richardson’s previous good character, loving relationship, hard work, financial debt of £50,000 and health problems, which included psychiatric issues such as depression and panic attacks, into account when giving a verdict.