William Geoffrey Mann
William Geoffrey Mann

Driver, that was several times over the limit for cocaine, fled from police at 137mph

13 June 2021

A driver has been jailed for trying to evade police at speeds up to 137mph, before crashing his Mercedes into a police car.

Tests proved William Geoffrey Mann, 22, had used cocaine and was several times over the limit when he was arrested.

Video footage from the pursuit police vehicle showed Mann reaching 137mph on rural roads and 9 mph in villages around Wetherby and Boroughbridge.

After failing to stop for officers in Kirk Deighton near Wetherby, he speeds through villages at up to three times the 30mph limit. He heads through Hunsingore, Cattal, Whixley, Aldborough, Boroughbridge and Bishop Monkton, using rural roads to try to escape.

But the traffic sergeant following him was a highly-trained advanced pursuit driver and knows the roads well.

Officers on the ground and in the Force Control Room worked together to anticipate his movements and form a plan to bring the pursuit to an end.

They closed in on him in Burton Leonard, and where they are ready to deploy stingers in a number of locations. But Mann crashed into an unmarked police car and was arrested. Nobody was injured during the incident, which happened in late September.

He reaches more than 70mph in residential areas of Boroughbridge.

Mann, a delivery worker from Wetherby, was taken into custody and charged with drug driving, dangerous driving and failing to stop.

He pleaded guilty and was jailed for eight months at York Crown Court today.

He was also banned from driving for a year and will have to take an extended retest.

The pursuit ends when Mann crashes into a police car, causing front-end damage.

Sergeant Julian Pearson, of the Roads Policing Group, captured the pursuit on his police in-car video system  and led the investigation against Mann.

Sergeant Julian Pearson said:

Mann made a conscious decision to fail to stop for the police, his judgement clouded by his recent drug usage. This combined with dangerous high speed driving is a lethal combination.

“This was a prolonged, determined and dangerous attempt to evade capture for drug driving, putting himself, his passengers, other road users and the police at serious risk.

When a vehicle is requested to stop and the driver refuses, the police have no idea why. It could be for a multitude of reasons and in Mann’s case it was for drug driving. Had he stopped then he would have been dealt for that offence and most likely not in prison as he is today.

We make absolutely no apologies for catching drivers like Mann  – we regularly see the carnage and heartbreak they cause innocent people. So I’m glad the courts have taken another dangerous driver off our roads and have protected our communities.

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