A driver filmed himself being chased at high speed by police through residential streets before telling arresting officers ‘It was a good chase wasn’t it?’
Salim Shah drove up to 60mph on roads through Accrington and Great Harwood, causing other cars to swerve out the way and led police at high speeds down alleyways and ‘blind turns’.
He later dumped the car and was found hiding in the undergrowth of a nearby park, Burnley Crown Court heard.Officers also found a video he had recorded of himself on his mobile phone in the last 30 seconds of the chase in which he says ‘this is the best isn’t it?’
Shah, 23, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, driving while disqualified and without insurance and possessing cannabis and all while subject to a suspended sentence order.
Kimberley Obrusik, prosecuting, said police were alerted to Shah driving on the eastbound M65 on the evening of September 16 this year and asked him to stop on Blackburn Road in Accrington.
He then led trained pursuit officers at double to road speed limit along several streets including Henry Street, Dill Hall Lane, Whalley Road and Harwood Lane and went through three red lights.
The car was found abandoned and police with dogs found him hiding in an undergrowth with seven snap bags of cannabis.
Miss Obrusik said officers also found his mobile phone which had been fixed to the dashboard with a video from the final moments of the chase.
In the video Shah said: “Listen I love you yeah. I’m going to prison now as you can see.
“I’m being jailed by the police. I will probably be out in what six months or something? This is the best isn’t it?”
When interviewed he told police he borrowed the car to visit his sister and said the car chase was a ‘stupid and a spur of the moment thing’ and he was ‘careless rather than reckless as the roads were quiet’.
Laura Barbour, defending, said on the day ‘immature’ Shah, of Hillview Court, Woking, Surrey, had been given ‘difficult news which caused him sadness and upset’.
She said: “There’s very little which can sensibly be said on his behalf. He recognises there are a number of aggravating features here and very little positive can be said.
“Mercifully nobody was injured and no damage was caused. It really was a matter of luck.”
She told the court how Shah, who previously worked as a support worker for children with learning difficulties, was using the cannabis to ‘self-medicate’ his arthritis problems.
Recorder Suzanne Goddard QC said: “The word stupid comes immediately to mind. It was a quite deliberate course of driving, you knew what you were doing and didn’t want to stop.”
He was jailed for a total of 16 months, disqualified from driving until July 2017 and ordered to take a compulsory extended driving test.