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Escaped Prisoner Jailed After Driving the Wrong Way down the M3

  • Written by Editor

man jailed driving wrong side m27Watch footage of the incident here: https://youtu.be/c9lHJBESZWw

An escaped prisoner who tried to evade Hampshire officers by attempting to drive down the wrong way of a busy motorway has been jailed.

Darryl Dempsey, 22, from Eastbourne, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving at Southampton Crown Court.

He also pleaded guilty to escaping from lawful custody, driving whilst disqualified and criminal damage.

The court was told that Dempsey had been wanted by police after absconding from Ford prison in West Sussex on July 3.

The prosecutor said that on the evening of July 13, officers from the Roads Policing Unit were made aware of an Izuzu Trooper vehicle being driven by the wanted prisoner.

They approached the vehicle on the M271, close to the junction with the M27, but it failed to stop, so officers followed the vehicle.

As footage from the National Police Air Service and one of the police cars shows, Dempsey did everything he could to avoid capture, driving across fields, driving on footpaths and even attempting to drive down the wrong way of the M3.

Knowing just how dangerous driving this would be, one of the officers took decisive action and forced a collision with the vehicle, ending the 13 minute pursuit in Chilworth shortly before 10.30pm.

Fortunately no one was seriously injured as a result of the incident.

Dempsey was sentenced to a total of two years in prison, which will run consecutively to the current prison sentence already being served.

He was given six months in prison for escaping lawful custody, 16 months for dangerous driving and two months for criminal damage – all to run consecutively.

He was also given a four month prison sentence for driving whilst disqualified, which will run concurrent.

The judge also disqualified him from driving for a total of five years and 24 weeks, with an extended test to be taken after that time, and ordered to pay a £140 victim surcharge.

Chief Inspector Mark Lewis, from the Joint Roads Policing Unit, said: “Thanks to the bravery and courage of our highly-trained officers this pursuit ended without injury and with the man responsible detained.

“If Dempsey had not been stopped at that point, he would have got onto the M3, driving the wrong way, which would have been potentially fatal for him and any other innocent road users.

“Our roads policing officers are specially trained to carry out a range of different tactics, such as the one used in this incident, in order to stop those posing a danger to others.

“I am proud of the actions our officers took that day, putting themselves in harm’s way for the protection of others.”