THE driver of a car chased by police that crashed and led to the death of a North-East businessman has been arrested in hospital.

The 32-year-old motorist is to be questioned on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving.

Adam Wilkinson, 49, from Consett, County Durham, was a passenger in VW Bora, which hit a telegraph pole on Ebchester Bank, near Consett, in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

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The driver is currently in a ‘stable’ condition at the RVI in Newcastle.

A spokesman for Durham Constabulary said: “He has been arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving and remains in hospital under constant guard.

“His injuries are not classed as serious but the medical staff have some concerns about his condition and want to keep him in until at least the weekend.

“We would class him as ‘stable’ and when we have the medical clearance we will then carry out a formal interview.”

The Bora was being followed by a patrol car after police were alerted to suspicious behaviour in the car park at Tesco on Genesis Way by CCTV camera operators.

The driver is said to have ignored the instruction to pull over and headed down the B6309 Ebchester Bank.

Shortly afterwards, just after midnight, the car crashed into a telegraph pole at the junction of Springhouse Lane, on a steep section of the hill opposite St Mary’s Convent.

Mr Wilkinson was a father-of-two and the former managing director of APW Transport, a car transporting firm.

His family described him as a ‘loving and dedicated’ man.

Durham Constabulary referred the death to the Independent Police Complaints Commission, but the watchdog has said it would not be investigating the crash.

Police are appealing for any witnesses to the crash, or anyone who saw the VW Bora on the roads before the accident, to ring 101 and ask for the collision investigation unit.