Banned motorist drove at more than 60mph through Castleford town centre, court is told

A father-of-three with multiple driving bans led police on a chase through Castleford town centre, reaching speeds of more than 60mph.

By Nick Frame
Wednesday, 16th September 2020, 4:45 pm
Police chased Morgan at high speed.
Police chased Morgan at high speed.

Dash cam footage from the police vehicle was screened at Leeds Crown Court showing Tom Morgan taking blind corners at speed in a VW Golf and crossing over to the opposite carriageway, narrowly missing a motorcyclist coming the other way.

The 25-year-old admitted offences of dangerous driving and driving without a licence or insurance.

Prosecuting, Joseph Bell said a police officer had spotted Morgan in the black TDI Golf at around 5.30pm on Sunday, April 26 and began following him.

Morgan put his foot down and was doing more than double the 30mph limit in built-up residential areas.

The eight-minute chase even saw the police helicopter being scrambled as Morgan drove at speed along roads including Green Lane, Flass Lane, Leeds Road, Falcon Drive, Barnes Road, Love Lane, Middle Oxford Street, Albion Street, Wilson Street, Rhodes Street, Cross Street, North Street and Wood Street.

Morgan, of Wood Street, Castleford, eventually abandoned the car and ran but was soon tracked down.

He then gave 'no comment' answers during the police interview.

A probation report said that Morgan claimed he had bought the car to 'do up', that it was the first time he had driven it and that he panicked when he saw the police car following him.

He has three children, is a self-employed ground worker and regularly plays rugby.

Mitigating, Jane Brady said: "The reason why he panicked was because he was the provider for his family in difficult times.

"It was a Sunday teatime and mercifully, there were not many people about."

The court was told that Morgan had convictions and separate driving bans for drink-driving, driving without a licence and failing to provide a breath test.

He also had convictions for battery and possession of Class A drugs and was already serving a 20-week suspended sentence.

Judge Penelope Belcher described Morgan's latest charges as "appalling", adding: "You could have killed yourself and it was luck rather than care that you did not seriously injure someone.

"It's time for you to grow up, the laws are there for a reason - to protect people."

She jailed him for 42 weeks, banned him from driving for 12 months and told him he must sit an extended driving test to get his licence back.