A MAN who represented himself on a reckless driving charge said he was as cautious as he could be while doing speeds up to 160km/h during a police pursuit.
Jeremy Keith Johnson pleaded guilty to seven charges including reckless driving to escape pursuit, failing to stop, criminal damage, false plate and no authority to drive.
He appeared via video link from Casuarina Prison at Rockingham Magistrates Court on June 26.
The prosecutor said Johnson was driving on Langley Street, Rockingham, in September when he was involved in an accident.
Police signalled for him to stop but he failed to do so and accelerated heavily, driving through several built-up areas with many pedestrians around at the time.
He reached speeds of 140km/h on Railway Terrace, Kent Street and Dixon Road before doing 160km/h to 180km/h later on Ennis Avenue.
He had a minor collision with another car on Dixon Road, ran two red lights and drove on the wrong side of the road causing other road users to take evasive action.
He abandoned the car in Waikiki, where he jumped someone’s fence and ran into their home.
Magistrate Leanne Atkins asked if he had anything to say.
Johnson said he was a supervisor for home builders when one of his workers was getting into drugs.
“I had a falling out with the partner and I just didn’t want to come back to jail,” he said.
“I did take as much caution as I could (during the pursuit).
“I wasn’t under the influence of drugs or drink.”
Magistrate Atkins strongly objected to his reasoning.
“The fact remains that at 2.50pm you are driving at speeds of 140km/h-plus and endangering a large number of people,” she said.
“Then you go down the wrong side of the road, have a minor collision and ran two red lights.
“That was more by luck than ‘cautious’ driving’ Mr Johnson.
“You have totally disregarded the safety of people in this community – that is totally unacceptable.”
She sentenced him to one year and two months prison, disqualified him from driving for six years and fined him $900.