Ipswich: Dangerous joyrider back behind bars

IPSWICH: A serial offender caught joyriding in a stolen car twice in less than a year is back behind bars today.

Luke Stuttard was given a 12-month custodial sentence in a young offenders’ institution in February last year after being caught following a police pursuit.

The 21-year-old from Wren Avenue, Ipswich, has now been jailed for a total of 20 weeks after he was arrested less than six months later for aggravated vehicle taking.

His latest sentence came after Stuttard was convicted of being a passenger in a stolen Ford Focus.

The car was seen by police travelling along the wrong carriageway in London Road early on August 30 last year.

Due to the way in which the vehicle was being driven, officers chose not to pursue it.

It eventually came to a halt in Chantry Park. Stuttard was arrested a short time later.

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When he appeared before Ipswich magistrates, Stuttard pleaded guilty to aggravated vehicle taking and dangerous driving, being carried in a motor vehicle without consent, driving while disqualified, and driving without insurance.

He was sentenced to eight weeks in jail. Stuttard was given a further 12-week consecutive prison sentence after a previous suspended sentence for attempted burglary was activated.

He was also disqualified from driving for three years.

Last February he was given an 18-month ban by Ipswich Crown Court after admitting he allowed himself to be carried in a stolen vehicle.

Stuttard was a passenger in a Nissan Bluebird car, pursued at high speeds by police through Ipswich early on September 21, 2009.

The court heard the car was driven erratically in Whitton Church Lane, and through red lights into Norwich Road, before entering Whitehouse Road on the wrong side of the road.

It then left the carriageway and drove along a grass verge.

The vehicle travelled at speeds in excess of 60mph and crashed through barriers in Jovian Way, before mounting the river embankment in Riverside Road.

Police officers found Stuttard pinned between the vehicle and a metal fence.

During Stuttard’s sentencing Judge John Devaux, noted his “appalling record for driving offences”.

In November Stuttard was given a 16-week suspended jail sentence by magistrates after admitting attempted burglary at a Co-op in Norwich Road, Ipswich, on October 30.

n Do you think the punishment fits the crime? E-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk or write to Star Letters, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN.