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Suffolk drink driver jailed after swapping seats with passenger in high speed chase

PUBLISHED: 14:42 13 September 2017 | UPDATED: 18:34 13 September 2017

Jerry Salisbury has been jailed for eight months for driving offences. Picture: Courtesy of Suffolk Constabulary

Jerry Salisbury has been jailed for eight months for driving offences. Picture: Courtesy of Suffolk Constabulary

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A drunk driver who was seen swapping seats with a passenger during a high speed chase which was recorded on a police car’s dash-cam has been jailed for eight months.

During the pursuit, which lasted around 15 minutes, Jerry Salisbury drove at speeds of up to nearly 90mph and had four passengers in his Vauxhall Zafira who weren’t wearing seat belts, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

A police officer, who tried to get Salisbury to stop by activating the blue flashing lights on his car, saw Salisbury jump a red traffic light and reach speeds in the high 80s along a dual carriageway between Gorleston and Great Yarmouth, said David Wilson, prosecuting.

He had also driven at speed around a housing estate with tight bends before driving into the grounds of James Paget Hospital.

During the chase, Salisbury was seen to change places with one of his passengers and when the Zafira eventually came to a stop outside the hospital officers could smell alcohol and noticed his eyes were glazed. When asked about swapping seats with one of his passengers, Salisbury admitted he had done it because he had “had a drink”.

He was abusive towards police officers and a roadside breath test showed he had 103 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath – the legal limit is 35 microgrammes.

He was handcuffed and taken to a police station where he refused to provide a further breath specimen, said Mr Wilson. He told officers he was addicted to alcohol and had consumed eight cans of beer, some whisky and coke on the day in question.

The court heard the pursuit started after a police officer carrying out speed checks in Gorleston Road, Lowestoft, saw Salisbury driving at 51mph in a 30mph zone.

Salisbury, 29, of Pier Terrace, Lowestoft, admitted dangerous driving on April 18, failing to provide a specimen for analysis and driving without insurance and a licence. He was also banned from driving for two years and four months and ordered to pay a £140 victim surcharge.

The court heard Salisbury had no previous convictions for driving offences.

At the time of the offences he was homeless and was living in his car after an acrimonious divorce and his mother dying.

Andrew Thompson, for Salisbury, asked the court to give his client one last chance.

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