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JAILED: Drink-driver who led police on 100mph chase through Swindon

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A DRINK-driver who led police on a 100mph chase across Swindon has been jailed for 14 months.

Steven Titcombe had already sped across town and past the pubs and clubs on Newport Street after police tried to stop him in Gorse Hill.

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And the 36-year-old kept going on the metal rims after the tyres on his BMW were shredded by two stinger devices.

Colin Meeke, prosecuting, told Swindon Crown Court how officers first saw the car near the Moonrakers roundabout shortly before midnight on Friday August 17. They were concerned about the way it was being driven as it headed past Clive Parade towards Chapel roundabout, he said.

When the officers put on the blue lights and sirens the car sped away on to Great Western Way, going at about 70mph over the roundabout by Wicks.

He said the engine was clearly struggling as smoke was coming from the vehicle as it turned left under the Transfer Bridges and on to County Road, still at 70mph.

After overtaking and undertaking it went across the Magic Roundabout at the same speed and up Drove Road into Old Town, turning on to Newport Street.

Titcombe accelerated to 100mph as he went down Croft Road and over roundabouts into Wroughton on to Wharf Road.

As it went along Kellboro Avenue he said it struggled to maintain grip on the road as it headed up to the junction of Wharf Road and High Street.

He then headed back past the bottom of Brimble Hill, where the first stinger device started to shred the tyres.

The car continued along Swindon Road, where a second stinger was used, then up Croft Road to Victoria Road stopping in the Prospect Street car park.

Mr Meeke said: “At one point it was clear the car was running on alloys.”

After he was taken to the police station he was found to have 48mg of alcohol in 100ml of breath – the legal limit is 35mg.

Titcombe, of Queens Drive, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving and drink-driving.

The court heard that in 2009 he was jailed for a year after he admitted three counts of dangerous driving, where he repeatedly used his car as a weapon.

Tony Bignall, defending, said his client had suffered depression and panicked when he saw the police as he knew he had been drinking. He said that he was married with children and his family risked losing their home if he was jailed, as he was the family’s breadwinner.

Jailing him Judge Ina Lawrie QC said: “You travelled at a persistent high speed over a distance of about six miles, at speeds of up to 100mph.

“I have no choice sadly but to send you to prison despite the good things said about you. You made the decision to drive that way and sadly other people will suffer as a ricochet of your actions.”

He also banned him from the road for three years and seven months.

Wiltshire Police: ‘It was lucky no one was killed’

A spokesman for the force told the Swindon Advertiser: “We welcome the sentencing of Steven Titcombe after he showed no regard for the safety of pedestrians and other road users while being pursued by our officers, sometimes driving up to 100 mph in a built up area.

“It was luck rather than judgement that his dangerous driving didn’t result in any collisions and possible serious injury or death of passing pedestrians or motorists. This was compounded by the fact he was irresponsibly driving under the influence of alcohol.

“Although Steven Titcombe did show remorse after the incident, let’s hope this custodial sentence allows him more time to reflect on what could have been a tragic outcome to such a reckless act.”

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