Wrong-Way Driver Filmed By Friends Banned

Lisa Dowd, Midlands correspondent

A man who was filmed driving the wrong way down a dual carriageway has been banned for three years and given an eight-month suspended sentence.

Steven McInulty, 25, from Coventry was pursued by police officers as he sped along Faraday Avenue in Coleshill, Warwickshire, in June last year in his Citroen Saxo.

The footage, which was later posted on YouTube, shows him trying to evade capture by undertaking and driving over the central reservation and into the path of oncoming vehicles.

He then stops, reverses at speed, and manoeuvres onto the correct side of the road as other cars try to avoid him.

Warwick Crown Court heard officers decided it was safer to let him get away. He was later arrested after police saw the footage online.

McInulty, who was wearing a light-grey tracksuit, admitted dangerous driving, driving while disqualified and driving without insurance.

The judge was told he has a catalogue of previous motoring convictions and is currently out on licence after being released from prison for robbery.

Suspending his sentence for two years, Recorder Richard Atkins QC told McInulty: "When the police officer went after you, you then drove appallingly.

"You caused all sorts of vehicles to have to take evasive action as you drove the wrong way and you then drove past your pals, who all thought it was tremendously funny and who had the stupidity to film you.

"What you did, it is lucky nobody was killed or seriously injured."

The judge told McInulty that he, along with thousands of others, had viewed the footage online and he warned him against re-offending.

He said: "I'm not going to forget that piece of driving. I know that road and I'm going to remember you."

But Warwickshire Police have reacted angrily.

Sergeant Roger Fildes said: "I am extremely disappointed at the sentencing in this case and would have hoped that given ... the dangerous manner in which he drove his vehicle, this case would have resulted in a sentence that the local community and businesses would think more appropriate."

McInulty, who works for a scrap metal merchant, had his car crushed by police following the incident.

He was ordered to pay costs of £1,800 and complete 200 hours of unpaid work. Once he completes his driving ban, he will have to sit an extended test.

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