Man led police on 90mph chase with son, five, in the car

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Great Yarmouth man Steven Assani was given a suspended prison sentence at Norwich Crown Court after admitting dangerous driiving. - Credit: Archant

A father without a driving licence led police on a 90mph pursuit with his young child in the car, a court has heard.

Steven Assani, 31, had been spotted by police on Braddock Road, Caister-on-Sea, on his mobile phone while driving a BMW car.

Norwich Crown Court heard a police officer got out and knocked on the window before smashing it after recognising Assani.

John Morgans, prosecuting, said the officer put his hand inside the vehicle but the defendant, who had his five-year-old son in the car, “drove off at speed”.

Assani initially crashed into the back of a white Essex and Suffolk Water van before continuing along Ormesby Road.

Mr Morgans said Assani, who was being chased by police, reached speeds in excess of 70mph on roads which had 30mph and 40mph limits.

He said officers were doing 90mph but could still not catch the defendant who later absconded from the vehicle after the boy was left with his mother.

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Assani was later arrested but made no comment in interview.

The court heard Assani, who does not hold a full driving licence, was meant to be picking his young child up after school but had got into difficulties and borrowed his friend’s car to do It.

Assani, of Marine Parade, Great Yarmouth, appeared at court on Thursday (September 9) for sentence having previously admitted dangerous driving at about 2.45pm on May 14 this year.

He had also admitted driving while otherwise in accordance with a licence and driving without insurance on the same date.

Recorder Guy Ayers said it was an “extremely serious piece of dangerous driving”.

Recorder Ayers said the fact it was during the school run meant the defendant not only put himself at risk but “other parents and children” as well as his own child who was in the car at the time.

Assani was given a 10-month prison sentence suspended for 21 months.

He was also ordered to do 25 days rehabilitation activity requirement (RAR), a thinking skills programme and 80 hours of unpaid work.

In addition he was banned from driving for 15 months.

Rob Pollington, mitigating, said the defendant was “deeply ashamed”.

He said the defendant wanted to be there for his children but makes “poor choices” and in this situation “epically failed”.