Drug-addicted couple 'played Russian roulette' during chase up A1 in stolen car

Photo shows where it happened on the A1 near Retford
It happened on the A1 near Retford -Credit:Google Maps

A drug-addicted couple led police on a chase up the A1 in a stolen car. Nottingham Crown Court heard how during it, the car being driven by Rachael Baguley-Lowe and her passenger husband Graham Baguley swerved in and out of traffic and forced a lorry to mount a grass verge to avoid a collision.

At one stage during the pursuit, the officers trying to catch the pair made a decision to pull back such was the dangerous nature of the 43-year-old’s driving. Handing each of them a suspended sentence, Judge Michael Auty KC said: “You both chose to take a motor car belonging to a friend of yours and drove it up the A1 and other roads in a way that put the lives of other innocent people at risk.

“During the chase you forced the car between tight spaces and it is a miracle and a mercy no-one was hurt or killed, including the two of you. You chose to play Russian roulette with the lives of people that are not yours to play with.

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“But the reality is that if I send you to prison today you will be released in a relatively short space of time and when you are released you will no doubt be back on the drugs. The public will ask why I chose this route and the answer is that I am a realist.

“If there is any hope for the two of you then that time is now for you to get the help I am given you and keep off the drugs. I have thought long and hard about this case and the best prospect of keeping the public safe from you is to take the course I have taken.”

Annabel Lenton, prosecuting, said Baguley took the car from someone he knew in Worksop on the morning of September 13, 2021. She said that the woman told him if the car was not returned to her she would call the police.

The prosecutor said: “At around 12.30pm it was spotted on the A1 heading towards Retford with Miss Baguley-Lowe, his wife at the time, being the driver and Mr Baguley, her passenger.

“Miss Lowe failed to stop and began swerving between lanes, undertaking and forcing the car between other vehicles. The officers had to back off to avoid a crash and one lorry was forced to move on to the grass verge.

“When the car came to one junction, it shot off at the last minute and finally stopped.” Baguley, 52, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to aggravated vehicle taking and was handed a 12-month jail term, suspended for two years, with a three-month curfew, 25 rehabilitation sessions and a nine-month drug rehabilitation requirement.

Baguley-Lowe, also of no fixed address, was handed the same suspended jail term but with 120 hours unpaid work and the same requirements.

Both defendants were also disqualified from driving for two years. Dogby Johnson, for Baguley, said his client has been in custody for two months and is on a lowered methadone script.

Stefan Fox, for Baguley-Lowe, said his client has spent the past 55 days in prison and that “the prospect of returning there terrifies her”.