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Court / Sheriff bemoans ‘plague of dangerous driving’ in isles as young man admits going at excessive speeds

SHETLAND is suffering from a “plague of bad, dangerous driving”, according to local sheriff Ian Cruickshank.

He made the comment after a case called at Lerwick Sheriff Court on Wednesday in which a man admitted driving dangerously at grossly excessive speeds while just over three times the alcohol limit.

Sheriff Ian Cruickshank will sit on the bench for the first time next week. Photo: Chris Cope/Shetland News
Sheriff Ian Cruickshank.

Twenty year old Tyler Johnson, of Mid Yell, pleaded guilty to driving dangerously on the A971, A970 and B9074 roads on 7 March last year, repeatedly crossing the centre line, turning his lights on and off and failing to stop for police.

He also admitted driving with 169 microgrammes of alcohol in 100ml of blood –  the legal limit is 50 – as well as taking to the wheel with no insurance.

Procurator fiscal Duncan Mackenzie said the incident happened just after one in the morning.

Police officers on mobile patrol in the Tingwall area were alerted by a member of the public who believed Johnson was driving with no insurance.

They came across Johnson as he drove in the opposite direction as officers headed west.

He was driving at “extreme speeds”, the court heard, while at the same time turning his lights off and on.

Johnson was driving erratically and going back and forth across the carriageway, Mackenzie said.

Police officers then followed him, and while officers were going around 60mph Johnson had pulled ahead by some distance.

Another police vehicle was brought to the scene in an attempt to stop Johnson as he drove in the direction of Lerwick.

However, the driver then headed off in another direction before police managed to stop and arrest him.

A blood sample was obtained to ascertain drink driving, and it was produced about an hour after the incident.

Sheriff Cruickshank deferred sentencing for the preparation of a criminal justice social work report, with Johnson’s defence due to give representation at a later date.

He was disqualified from driving in the meantime ahead of his next court appearance on 11 May.

Sheriff Cruickshank commented that he has been concerned about recent instances of dangerous driving from young people in Shetland.

Space2face

Space2face Shetland

Space2face Shetland is an independent and confidential service which uses Restorative Justice and the arts to bring those harmed by crime or conflict and those responsible for the harm into communication. We enable everyone affected by a particular incident to play a part in repairing the harm and finding a positive way forward.

If you would like to reach out to us, please contact us via e-mail info@space2face.org or mobile 07564 832467.

If you would like to know more, visit our website www.space2face.org, or our Facebook page #space2faceshetland.


The project is also currently fundraising to secure office space in Shetland’s brand-new creativity and wellness centre, The Mission. If you’re interesting in getting involved, or making a donation, head over to www.space2face.org/how-you-can-help