A MAN in his fifties who drove carelessly in a short police pursuit was told he is getting too old for such offending and he should now, “keep his nose clean.”

The comments were made to Arthur Addison as he was sentenced for careless driving and no insurance, relating to the brief chase in a car he had on loan for test drive purposes, on October 10, last year.

Durham Crown Court heard that two officers on mobile patrol saw Addison in a Volkswagen Polo in a housing area known as Ivy Way Estate, in Pelton, at about 9.30am.

Chris Wood, prosecuting, said Addison’s son, of the same name, was a passenger in the car.

Addison, who was driving, did not appear to be wearing a seat belt, although he put it on before leaving the estate.

Dr Wood said the officers, who had dealt with Addison in the past, decided to make inquiries as to whether he was permitted to be driving.

By the time they turned the police car and exited the estate, Addison was already travelling along the village Front Street.

Addison was estimated to be driving above the 30-mph speed limit and the police driver, who illuminated his blue lights, had to accelerate to try to catch up.

Dr Wood said Addison was seen to “undertake” a vehicle and hastily pull into Beamish Court, “giving no consideration to other road users.”

It went over a speed bump with a bang and when police caught up there was a minor collision, which Dr Wood said may have been unintentional.

Both Addison and his son were then said to be “obstructive” as the officers tried to bring them from the Polo and had to resort to the use of CS gas spray.

Dr Wood said three pedestrian witnesses described the Polo being driven “dangerously”.

Addison was initially charged with dangerous driving, which he denied, but on the day of trial, a guilty plea to the lesser offence of careless driving was accepted by the prosecution.

The 57-year-old defendant, of Grange Villa, near Chester-le-Street, was said to have two previous dangerous driving convictions, the last in 2010, but the court was told he has since passed an extended re-test.

Joe Hedworth, mitigating, said Addison accepts he drove too quickly down the Front Street and into the cul-de-sac.

But he said in his view the defendant may have received some “summary justice” given the forceful nature of his arrest.

Recorder Darren Preston told Addison even if he was arrested in a “rather zealous” manner, he should never have been driving the vehicle in the first place, given that he was uninsured, and then should have stopped for police at the first opportunity.

Fining him £200, with eight licence penalty points, Recorder Preston told Addison: “You’re getting too old for this. You shouldn’t be appearing before the crown court at your age.”

As he was leaving the dock, the Recorder told him: “Keep your nose clean Mr Addison.”