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Car chase youths escape prison sentence

PUBLISHED: 14:32 07 October 2001 | UPDATED: 10:37 03 March 2010

TWO Suffolk teenagers have narrowly escaped prison for using threatening behaviour.

Jamie Love and Steven Allum, both 19, pleaded guilty at Ipswich Crown Court to using threatening behaviour.

TWO Suffolk teenagers have narrowly escaped prison for using threatening behaviour.

Jamie Love and Steven Allum, both 19, pleaded guilty at Ipswich Crown Court to using threatening behaviour. Allum also admitted causing criminal damage.

The court heard that Allum and Love were in one car and their colleagues were in another car when they gave chase to an Andrew Wedgewood for about three miles around Stowmarket following a dispute.

Mr Wedgewood was in a car with the cars owner Lee Brand and two 15-year-old girls.

The court heard that Mr Brand's car was eventually "sandwiched" between the other two and Allum demanded that Mr Wedgewood get out.

The two men and two girls locked themselves in the vehicle and Allum used a metal steering lock to smash the rear window.

Andrew Thompson mitigating for both defendants said Allum, of Stowmarket Road, Old Newton and Love of Gipping Road, Stowupland had not pleaded guilty until eight days into their trial because they denied the original charges of affray.

Mr Thompson said Love had held down a "difficult job putting tyres on large agricultural vehicles" and was of previous good character.

He added that Allum was currently unemployed but expected to start work soon. Allum had a previous criminal record but that was for motoring offences a year ago.

Judge Nicholas Beddard said the two men and two women were "subjected to a frightening ordeal". "Your behaviour was borderline and not far off one which would require a custodial sentence," he added.

He ordered Allum and Love to carry out 100 hours community service. He also ordered Allum to pay £117.50 compensation to Mr Brand within six months and a further £50 towards court costs. Love was told to pay £250 towards court costs.

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