120mph crash driver is jailed

James Bridgewater
James Bridgewater
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A DRINK-DRIVER who crashed after a 120mph police chase has been locked up after showing a “flagrant disregard” for the chance he was given.

James Bridgewater, was given a suspended sentence in April last year and ordered to carry out 150 hours’ unpaid work.

But Newcastle Crown Court heard the 21-year-old has turned up to just 29 of his 65 probation appointments and completed just 19 hours of work.

Probation officials branded his response to the order as “appalling”.

Bridgewater was brought back to court yesterday where a judge activated eight months of the suspended sentence.

Mr Recorder Keith Miller told him: “You have shown a flagrant disregard of the order of this court.”

Bridgewater had been almost twice the legal limit when he got behind the wheel of his pal’s Vauxhall Astra in Newcastle, and set off for a 20-mile trip to County Durham in November 2011.

Police had tried to pull him over when they saw him get behind the wheel at Mosley Street in the city, in the early hours of the morning. But he drove off through a red light and ignored the officers’ requests.

Bridgewater was finally brought to a standstill when he crashed into railings at a roundabout, at the Seaham turn-off of the A19.

The 20-year-old, of Waverley Close, Shotton Colliery, who has a history of driving offences, had admitted dangerous driving, driving with excess alcohol, driving while disqualified and having no insurance.

Martin Scarborough, defending, said he accepted Bridgewater’s response to the court order had been “poor” and said he has already served the majority of the prison sentence while on remand.