A five-minute-long, high-speed chase that passed a primary school and pedestrians, has seen a 19-year-old Esperance man jailed for six months and one day.
Eric Robert Adams pleaded guilty to six charges in Esperance Courthouse yesterday, Tuesday, March 12, and was sentenced by Magistrate Brionie Ayling.
Police prosecutor Senior Constable Carolyn Petersen told the court Adams was driving on Pink Lake Road at 12.20pm on December 14, 2018 with a male passenger.
Police activated their lights after registering his speed at 70kms in a 60km zone. Adams passed police without slowing down and police turned their sirens on.
He sped through built-up areas and drove through a give-way sign at an intersection without slowing.
He eventually drove on Andrew Street, passed a primary school, where he overtook other drivers and drove on the wrong side of the road.
Adams drove on Windich Street at 90kms where there was a high number of pedestrians.
As he drove along Kemp Street to Dempster Street, he caused another driver to brake suddenly.
Adams eventually reached the Esplanade, where another car in front of him forced him to brake suddenly. He then mounted a kerb on the Esplanade and drove along a footpath.
His speed was detected at 110km on the Esplanade. The foreshore-adjacent street is a 50km zone, with a number of playgrounds.
He applied his brakes heavily, causing smoke, and skidded into Balfour Street.
On Dempster Street, Adams slowed to a stop on a grass verge and surrendered to police. Police found five grams of cannabis in his possession.
Adams' license was suspended at the time.
In an interview with police, Adams said "ah, yeah it was very reckless".
He was charged with reckless driving to escape pursuit by police, which carries a mandatory term of immediate imprisonment.
Adams was also charged for driving with cannabis in his system, failing to comply with a direction to stop, no authority to drive, exceeding the speed limit by no more than 9kms and possessing cannabis.
Adams' lawyer Yovundhi Jayasekera said her client had "made the stupidest decision of his life" and "knows he's going to jail".
Ms Jayasekera said he panicked because he had cannabis and "blanked", but eventually "snapped back into reality" when he stopped.
She said Adams had turned to cannabis to deal with family issues, including the loss of a close family member from cancer. Adams had raised $1600 after shaving his head for cancer.
Ms Jayasekera said Adams had good prospects and wanted to continue his education in prison.
Magistrate Ayling took into account Adams' age, early plea of guilty and his record, which was "not significant".
The magistrate imposed the minimum sentence for reckless driving to escape police of six months and one day. For failing to stop, he was sentenced to a one-month concurrent jail term.
For driving with no authority he was fined $1000 and for speeding, possessing cannabis and driving with cannabis in his system he was given a global fine of $300.
Adams was also charged $292.50 in court and analysis fees.
He was also banned from driving for two years.
Adams is eligible for parole.