Officers are forced to aim at a speeding runaway driver as he narrowly avoids a head on crash, stingers and runs red lights in tonight’s action-packed episode of Police Interceptors.
The chase began after officers tried to stop a BMW which they believed was being driven by a wanted man.
Police were on patrol near Nottingham City hospital when they spotted the car.
The man that they believed was driving, Liam Brown, had breached a restraining order and was wanted, so they pulled in behind him as they approached the junction of Hucknall Road and Gala Way and kept a low profile whilst they waited for backup.
The car began slowing down ahead of traffic lights along this road, leading the interceptors to think it was coming to a stop on its own. But, as another police car was pulled in front of the vehicle and they signalled for the car to stop it sped off.
The driver pulled around the police car and onto the wrong side of the road, hurtling through red lights and speeding past other cars.
He then led officers towards Bulwell, careering through Bestwood Road and St Alban’s Road, parts of which go down to a 20mph speed limit. Despite this, he continued to drive in excess of 70mph, going on the wrong side of a central reservation and forcing another car off the road.
As the 28-minute chase made its way towards Colwick, the driver reached 110mph and took the bus lane as he continued to hurtle along Daleside Road.
At this point, Sergeant Martyn Toombes was hot on the trail. He followed the car as it re-joined Burton Road and, as it tried to make swift u-turn to get away, he faced the car head on, making contact and stopping Brown in his tracks before he could go any further.
Brown, 32, of Astral Grove, Hucknall, was charged with dangerous driving following the incident, which started around 6.30 on Monday 21 September 2020, as well as two counts of breaching a restraining order. He was sentenced to 12 months in prison, disqualified from driving for six months and will also need to complete an extended re-test.
Sergeant Toombes, who is specifically trained in tactical pursuits, said: “It was extremely fortunate that no one was hurt during this chase.
“Pursuits that last as long as this one are extremely rare, and even more so when it comes to the city. We usually find people we’re chasing look to abandon the car as soon as possible, but this wasn’t happening so we had to balance the risk of chasing and stopping him with making sure no one else became involved or got hurt.
“It was before 7pm on a Monday, the roads were still busy with people coming home from work, and it could’ve had a very different ending on a number of occasions where Brown was overtaking other cars at speed and driving on the wrong side of the road. As he was coming out of Top Valley Way in particular, drivers had to slam on their brakes to avoid a crash.
“Our priority, always, was to bring this to a stop at the earliest opportunity. I got behind him and as he tried to make the u-turn, an opportunity arose to stop him.
“Whilst we use tactical pursuit quite often to stop vehicles, we don’t use contact a lot at all. However, on this occasion I did as it was going to ensure that he was stopped in his tracks and no longer a danger to others on the road or to the person he had breached his restraining order against.
“You don’t tend to think about potential injuries you might cause yourself when you decide to make contact. I think I can speak for other officers that the determination to stop an offender takes over and we are willing to put ourselves at risk to keep others safe.
“As it happens, the damage on my car was a lot less than I expected. I was able to get it back after a couple of weeks in the workshop and it just goes to show that our equipment serves us well and allows us to do our jobs to the best of our ability.
“The most important thing is that pursuing and stopping this man inevitably meant he didn’t go on to harm even more people with his dangerous driving, and also the custodial sentence meant that the person he had breached his restraining order against was reassured and kept safe as well.”
From four wheels to four legs, a suspect is hunted by a canine cop as he leads the knife crime team on a woodland chase, and cops save a shops (stolen) bacon after a dodgy tail light leads officers to a shoplifter.
All this and more in tonight’s Police Interceptors – Channel 5 at 8pm.