Matthew Backhouse

Matthew Backhouse is an APNZ news reporter based in Wellington.

Teens flee from police in stolen car

Photo / File
Photo / File

A 15-year-old driver reached speeds of 130km/h in a stolen car while fleeing from police in Tauranga overnight.

Police say they are horrified by the incident, which came just hours before three 16-year-old boys were lucky to escape serious injuries when their car left the road and rolled in Te Puna near Tauranga.

Senior Sergeant Glenn Saunders said police tried to stop a car with three occupants in Te Puke shortly after midnight.

The car did not stop and fled to Mt Maunganui, where police had deployed road spikes.

The road spikes failed and the pursuit lasted for another 10 minutes until the car came to a stop in a dead end street.

Mr Saunders said the car, which had been stolen from Te Puke, reached speeds of 130km/h on the open road and 60km/h in urban areas.

Police found a 15-year-old boy at the wheel and two 14-year-old girls in the car.

The driver and one of his passengers have been referred to Youth Aid.

The incident came just hours before three 16-year-old boys were lucky to escape serious injuries in a single-car crash.

Mr Saunders said a Honda Accord failed to take a gentle right-hand bend on Borrell Rd in rural Te Puna, near Tauranga, about 3.30am.

The car left the road and came to rest on its roof in a ditch.

One of the 16-year-old boys was taken to hospital with minor injuries, while the other two were uninjured.

Mr Saunders said all three had been drinking and police were trying to determine who was driving the car at the time.

"Young teenagers joy-riding in cars, failing to stop for police and in the second incident adding booze into the equation are all the ingredients for disaster," Mr Saunders said.

"Staff who attended the crash on Borrell Rd were amazed none of the occupants were seriously injured or killed, judging by the damage to the car. They are three lucky boys."

- APNZ

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