Burglar involved in high-speed chase told police he would “bite them” after claiming he had coronavirus
PUBLISHED: 17:39 29 May 2020 | UPDATED: 18:21 29 May 2020
A man who burgled two convenience stores before leading the police on a high-speed chase through the centre of Ipswich has been sentenced to four years in prison.
Darrell Lambert, who was described as being homeless by the court at the time of the offences, led four police cars on a chase through Ipswich in April.
He drove at double the speed limit, venturing across grass verges and pavements before threatening officers by telling them he thought he had Covid-19 when they stopped him.
The 33-year-old was sentenced today at a hearing at Ipswich Crown Court after pleading guilty to two burglaries, two counts of assaulting an emergency worker, driving while disqualified and failing to provide a sample.
The court heard how on April 3 at around 11.30pm, Lambert had smashed his way into Seckford Golf Club in Woodbridge by throwing a concrete slab through a glass window.
He entered the premises taking alcohol, chocolate and a baseball cap which was later found in his silver VW Golf.
A few hours later he was seen breaking into Martin’s Newsagents, Saxmundham, where he again carried out an untidy search and took alcohol and confectionery before driving away in the VW.
The number plate of the vehicle was caught on CCTV and officers later picked the car up in Civic Drive, Ipswich, at around 3.25am.
Lambert led officers on a high-speed chase through the centre of Ipswich before driving eastwards.
Officers reported he was driving at 60mph in a 30mph zone and moved across grass verges and pavements in his bid to escape. His car struck a tree stump in Cliff Lane before Lambert decamped.
Once officers had detained him, he told them he believed he had Covid-19 and would bite and spit at them if they tried to put a mask over his face.
Before sentencing, Kelly Fernandez-Lee, mitigating, said that Lambert had been going through difficult personal times and was ‘sorry’ for what he had done.
However, Judge David Goodin said the acts were “perfectly appalling”, sentencing Lambert to a total of four years in prison.
He told the court that the car chase displayed a “terrible catalogue of driving” and said it was a “miracle no one was hurt”.
Lambert was also banned from driving and forced to pay a victim surcharge of £181.
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