A thug who stole a Nottingham taxi before taking a man prisoner during a drunken rampage has been jailed.
Kieran Niell was picked up by the taxi in Bulwell and taken to a massage parlour in Sheffield.
On the journey back down the M1, Niell, who had been drinking and smoking cannabis, said he wanted ‘to cause an accident’ and tried to grab the steering wheel.
The taxi driver pulled over and was forced to get out of his taxi by Niell, who then got in the driver’s seat and sped off.
Police received a 999 call from the victim around 3:45 am on 20 May 2023 saying a man had ‘gone crazy’ in his taxi before stealing it and leaving him by the side of the road close to junction 26 of the motorway.
Around one hour later two police officers on patrol spotted the stolen vehicle alongside a van in Queen’s Drive, Nottingham, with three men standing around it.
Two of the men initially ran away but the third, later found to be Niell, got back inside the taxi and rammed the police car in an attempt to escape.
Niell was arrested and the two other men returned to describe what had happened.
They had been driving their van close to Shardlow Marina, Derbyshire when they spotted a taxi by the side of the road and assumed it had broken down.
When they approached Niell he falsely told them he had a gun and threatened to kill them if they did not help him get home.
Niell forced one of the men to get into the taxi with him while the other drove the van and showed him the way to Nottingham. He took both men’s mobile phones.
Niell was found to have 79 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal driving limit is 35mcg.
The 28-year-old, of Nottingham, appeared at Nottingham Crown Court on Monday (22 January) where he was jailed for a total of two years and eight months.
Niell had earlier pleaded guilty to false imprisonment, drink-driving, dangerous driving, aggravated vehicle taking and possession of cannabis.
Detective Constable Emma White, of Nottinghamshire Police, said:
“Niell’s drunken rampage in the early hours of the morning left a number of innocent victims terrified about what might happen to them.
“Although no one was physically harmed, this was no thanks to Niell. After drinking heavily and taking drugs, he tried to steer a taxi on the M1 and then stole the vehicle when the driver did the right thing by stopping.
“Neill was intoxicated but proceeded to drive the vehicle dangerously along roads before coming to a standstill in Derbyshire.
“Not content with this, he then forced two other men to help him get back to Nottingham against their will by threatening them with violence.
“I am pleased the judge has seen fit to put him behind bars where he can reflect on his behaviour.”