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Lakes danger driver spared immediate prison

Bernard Joseph Ward pictured after today's court hearing
Bernard Joseph Ward pictured after today’s court hearing

[A] DANGER driver who led police on an “astonishing” high-speed night-time pursuit through the Lake District has been spared an immediate prison sentence.

Officers tailed 26-year-old Bernard Joseph Ward past scenic Ullswater and through Glenridding before following him over Kirkstone Pass on 13th June.

Towards the end of a 30-mile chase, which began in Penrith, police with sirens and blues lights activated reached up to 110mph as they tried to stop Ward.

Having switched off his lights, ran through a red light and ignored speed cameras, the father-of-two finally pulled over in Kendal.

He was sentenced at Carlisle Crown Court today (MON) having previously admitted driving dangerously on roads which included the A592 and A591.

Judge Peter Hughes QC heard mitigation on behalf of Ward, who was said to be “mystified” about why he did not stop before he did.

Judge Hughes imposed an eight-month prison sentence which he suspended for two years in view of the defendant’s guilty plea and lack of previous criminal convictions.

Ward, of Gas Street, Platt Bridge, Wigan – who was living in Penrith at the time of the offence – was given 200 hours’ unpaid work and a 12-week night-time curfew. He was banned from driving for 18 months and must pass an extended re-test.

“What you did really is quite astonishing,” the judge told him. “It was an incredibly dangerous and reckless piece of driving.”

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