'Ridiculous' driver fined

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A judge has told a 20-year-old Napier motorist, who reached speeds of 180km/h while fleeing police, that the courts were "sick of seeing people like you with all the excuses in the world."

Rick Walter David Jones appeared at the Napier District Court and pleaded guilty to charges of driving at dangerous speed and failing to stop after the high speed chase on June 8. Judge Geoff Rea called his driving "ridiculous".

Court summaries showed he was initially clocked at 162km/h on Tannery Rd in Meeanee about 11.25pm. He later accelerated up to 180km/h after a police patrol car activated its lights and sirens.

He then pulled into his own driveway and was chased into the house by police.

His lawyer Michael McAleer, who told the court his client had no prior convictions, said he disputed travelling that fast, and instead estimated he had reached speeds of only 160km/h. "He's a young man with a fast car and a heavy right foot," Mr McAleer said.

Judge Rea said the lack of any prior convictions counted for little. "You're just as dead [travelling that fast] whether a first offender or not," Judge Rea said.

"This is ridiculous driving ... quite frankly the courts get sick of seeing people like you with all the excuses in the world. You were fleeing police and I don't see that it helps that you were pulling up your own driveway."

The judge said Jones could either give something back to the community for the danger he had placed it in, or face a fine that would "make his eyes water".

Jones opted for a fine and was ordered to pay $1250 and court costs of $132. He was also disqualified for eight months.

Jones' offending came just eight days before an 18-year-old Napier teenager also fled police in his car, allegedly reaching speeds of 185km/h.

Police saw the teen's speeding vehicle on Swamp Rd in the early hours of Saturday and attempted to stop him, which resulted in a pursuit that ended when the driver pulled over at the Napier Golf Course.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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