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Police helicopter finds drink driver hiding in field following 114mph police chase

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BT Coleraine

A DRINK driver who hit a speed of 114mph along unlit country roads during a 16-mile police chase before the tyres of the vehicle were burst by a ‘stinger’ device has been branded a “menace”.

Shane Patrick Anthony Brolly (22), a joiner of Hass Park in Dungiven, had run off and tried to hide in fields before being located with the help of a police helicopter which had been drafted in.

The defendant appeared in the dock at Coleraine Magistrates Court on Monday and was warned he could be jailed.

A prosecutor said police received a report at 12.22am on Sunday June 23 this year of a Toyota Avensis being “all over the road” going through Mosside towards Coleraine and a short time later in Coleraine police spotted the vehicle.

They put on blue lights and sirens but the vehicle failed to stop.

At one stage police drove alongside Brolly telling him to pull over and although he indicated he would do so he then drove on.

Over a period of 16 miles towards Dungiven he drove at speeds up to 114mph on dark country roads where other drivers were present.

Brolly sped along Dunhill Road, Cashel Road and Belraugh Road in the Macosquin and Ringsend areas and onto the Legavallon Road towards Dungiven and was only halted when police deployed a ‘stinger’ device.

He then exited the vehicle and ran into a field before a police helicopter located him lying face down trying to hide.

He refused to give a preliminary breath sample but an evidential breath sample at 2.59am showed a reading of 50 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath – the legal limit is 35mcgs.

The court was told the vehicle belonged to the defendant’s father who had not given him permission to take the car.

The prosecutor said Brolly told police: “I apologise”.

At court he pleaded guilty to charges including dangerous driving; failing to stop for police; aggravated taking and causing damage to a vehicle; absence of insurance; failing to provide a preliminary breath sample and driving with excess alcohol in his breath.

District Judge Peter King imposed an interim driving ban as he adjourned the case until mid-October for a pre-sentence report.

He told Brolly: “The blue light chase for 16-odd miles puts your liberty at risk”.

The judge added: “You are clearly a menace to road-users”.

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