Motorist caught ‘driving like a rocket with two women bouncing around in car’

Friday Bridge where motorist James Howlett was caught dangerous driving by police. PHOTO; Matthew Us

Friday Bridge where motorist James Howlett was caught dangerous driving by police. PHOTO; Matthew Usher. - Credit: Matthew Usher

A motorist caught driving at police “like a rocket” had two frightened passengers in the car, a court has heard.

James Howlett, 25, was spotted by police driving a Toyota Celica in the Friday Bridge area of Wisbech.

Norwich Crown Court heard two female passengers were seen “bouncing around the vehicle”.

Philip Farr, prosecuting, said Howlett was seen by police driving a silver Toyota Celica “like a rocket”.

Mr Farr said officers described the passengers as looking “shocked” and “frightened”.

Others had contacted police about the vehicle which was found abandoned after it hit a fence in the Tower Road area of Wisbech.

Police stopped Howlett, who had passed the keys onto one of the passengers.

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But the Celica was found on a screen saver on the defendant’s phone while a bank card belonging to Howlett was also found in the vehicle.

After being arrested by police, Howlett admitted dangerous driving, although told officers it had not felt like he had hit the fence,

Howlett, of Oil Mill Lane, Wisbech, appeared at court on Tuesday, November 3 having previously admitted dangerous driving on July 1 this year.

He also previously admitted driving without insurance, driving while disqualified and failing to report an accident.

Jailing him for 10 months, Judge Maureen Bacon said: “You had two passengers who must’ve been scared at the way you were driving.

“You had no heed for their safety in the way you were driving.”

Judge Bacon said it was a “bad example of dangerous driving” in terms of the risk he posed to his two passengers.

Howlett was also disqualified Howlett from driving for 17 months.

Simon Walters, mitigating, said he entered guilty pleas to the offences which were committed while he was going through a “rough time”.

Mr Walters said that at the time his mother was unwell and his father had attempted to take his own life.

But he said Howlett, who has mild autism, has been in custody since July 11 in what was his first experience of custody.

He said it was not an experience he wanted to repeat and urged the judge to make any sentence as short as possible.