A lout has been jailed after leading police on a terrifying 110mph chase across the north-east, in what a sheriff branded “about the most serious such charge it’s possible to imagine”.
Police used a stinger to burst a tyre on the stolen Skoda being driven by Alexander Hart, 28, but even that didn’t stop the 15-mile pursuit along the A90 and various other roads across the region on May 30.
The burst tyre later came off completely when an officer made “tactical contact” and the car came to a stop.
But even then Hart reversed in the direction of an officer causing him to run out of the way, before speeding off again and finally crashing into a barrier.
Hart, a prisoner of HMP Grampian, previously pled guilty to a string of charges over the incident, as well as separate matters.
And he has now appeared via video link at Aberdeen Sheriff Court again to be sentenced.
Sheriff William Summers told Hart: “The offences on this indictment are very serious, including amongst them two charges of dangerous driving, one of which involving a truly shocking episode of driving at speed while pursued by police.
“It’s about the most serious such charge it’s possible to imagine.
“A stinger-like device was deployed and even that did not stop you.”
The sheriff jailed Hart for a total of 30 months and banned him from driving for seven years and three months.
He also imposed a five-year non-harrassment order in respect of a domestic offence.
Hart had pled guilty to reset of the stolen car, dangerous driving, failing to provide breath samples and failing to co-operate with a preliminary drug test.
He also admitted another charge of dangerous driving related to an offence on May 26, as well as driving while disqualified, a domestically aggravated charge of behaving in a threatening or abusive manner, and failing to comply with a curfew bail condition.
Defence agent Michael Burnett said his client had been in a “toxic, on-and-off relationship” and had turned to drugs as part of a “downward spiral”.
However, the solicitor said: “Taking the troubled relationship out of the way might go some way to improving his ability to behave himself.”
Regarding the police chase, Mr Burnett said: “It certainly wasn’t planned in any way and was a result of his inability to properly deal with what is going on around him.”
Fiscal depute Colin Neilson previously told Aberdeen Sheriff Court: “At around 10.40pm on Saturday May 30 a blue Skoda car was seen heading south on the A90 near Ellon. The accused was driving the car. There were no passengers.
“Road policing units were dispatched to make a search.
“At 10.50pm a constable took up a static point on the A90 at Foveran. He saw the car travelling south on the A90 towards Aberdeen. He signalled for it to stop at which time it failed to do so and a pursuit was declared.
“It was pursued on the A90 and onto the A92 at speeds of up to 110mph.”
Officers at the A92 Murcar roundabout “successfully stung” the vehicle using spikes and the front nearside tyre was punctured.
Mr Neilson said: “The car turned right at Murcar roundabout onto the B999 and was then pursued along Denmore Road, Greenbrae Drive and Dubford Road before it turned onto the B977 north.
“Due to the punctured tyre the speed of the car reduced and it travelled at between 30 and 60mph.
“While travelling north on the B997 attempts were made to contain the car. The accused swerved towards the police vehicles and braked heavily to force them to take evasive action and stop them passing.
“On approach to the B997 junction with the B977 Parkhill crossroad, an officer made tactical contact with the front nearside of the car in an attempt to disable it. The car lost its front nearside tyre and came to a stop.
“Another constable then tried to apprehend the accused and got out of his car. The accused engaged reverse gear, forcing the officer to run out of the way to avoid being struck by the vehicle.
“The accused then drove away north on the B977 road, colliding with a divisional car which sustained minor damage.
“An officer pursued the accused as it approached the T-junction with the unclassified road leading to Newmachar.
“The accused failed to negotiate the bend and collided with an Armco barrier on the opposite side of the junction. The accused then got out of the car and ran away.
“He was arrested shortly after.”
The Skoda, worth around £8,000 had been stolen at 4am that morning.
Mr Neilson said Hart initially claimed he had bought the car from someone and did not know it was stolen, however, he added the defence now accepted he had taken possession of the vehicle in the knowledge it was stolen.
Hart has multiple previous convictions for stealing vehicles, and this was not the first time he has led police on a high-speed chase in a stolen car.