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Christmas day car chase

A YOUNG Shetland man with drug problems looks set to go to jail after a car chase on icy roads through Lerwick on Christmas day, during which he tried to run down a police officer.

On Wednesday Lerwick Sheriff Court heard how 22 year old Steven Nicolson, of 12 Park Lane, Lerwick, was driving “at speed” along the town’s King Harald Street in the early hours of last Christmas morning when he was spotted by the police.

Procurator fiscal Duncan Mackenzie said that the roads were covered in snow after a heavy fall that night and road conditions were so bad that the police were told not to leave the town.

When Nicolson realised the police were following him he accelerated rapidly, driving “well above the 30 mph speed limit”.

Mr Mackenzie said Nicolson’s passenger pleaded with him to slow down because of the ice on the road, but he refused, saying that he did not want to lose his licence.

He drove at 45 mph along Burgh Road, St Sunniva Street, Gilbertson Road, Hayfield Lane and Goodlad Crescent, narrowly missing parked cars at the side of the road.

Eventually his car spun out of control and he ended in a driveway on Hayfield Lane, revving his engine as hard as he could to get free of a snow drift.

The police caught up with him, leaped out of their car and one of the officers ran around the front of Nicolson’s vehicle to reach the passenger door. Just then the car lurched forward and the officer had to leap out of the way to avoid being hit. The other policeman managed to open the driver’s door and grab the keys before he got away.

Later experts discovered the car had a cracked windscreen that impaired the driver’s vision and a bald tyre.

Nicolson pled guilty to culpably and recklessly driving the car in the direction of a police officer and dangerous driving at grossly excessive speeds on icy roads in a faulty vehicle.

He also admitted possessing small quantities of the Class C drug diazepam at Clothister, Sullom, on 3 October and heroin at Lerwick police station on 3 February.

Sheriff Graeme Napier released Nicolson on bail until Thursday while a social enquiry report on him was updated, telling him not to be surprised if he was sent to custody.