A TEENAGER who stole his granddad’s car and crashed it whilst high on drugs showed “total irresponsibility and lack of respect for the law”, a judge has said.

Jack Shorter was living with his grandparents who had been helping him find a job when he took the keys to his grandfather’s Hyundai Tuscan in September last year.

When his grandfather Jack Topping reported the incident, police officers tracked the car down and pursued Shorter near Pebmarsh, close to Halstead, where the defendant failed to stop and hit speeds of 50mph in a 30mph zone as he attempted a getaway.

Hearing - Jack Shorter appeared at the sentencing hearing from HMP ChelmsfordHearing - Jack Shorter appeared at the sentencing hearing from HMP Chelmsford (Image: Daniel Rees, Newsquest)

Shorter, 19, then lost control of the car and crashed it into a hedge in Pebmarsh Road and was arrested by police, who found he taken cannabis after they conducted a drug test.

The defendant, who is currently serving a jail sentence at a young offender institution for drug dealing, admitted failing to stop a vehicle when required by police, driving a vehicle with a controlled drug above the specified limit, using a vehicle without insurance, driving a vehicle without a licence, and theft.

George Dixon, mitigating, said Shorter was making good use of his time in custody and had lined up with employment as a bricklayer with his father’s business following his release from prison.

Addressing Shorter, of Broadstrood in St Osyth, chair of the bench Martin Lutchfield said he would be “horrified” if he thought of stealing from his grandparents.

He said: “You stole your grandfather’s car – that was a very significant breach of trust given you are with them and they are looking after you.

“I would be horrified if it even entered my mind to steal from my grandparents – it is a shocking thing to have done.

“You have shown total irresponsibility and a lack of respect for the law.

“To compound it all, you had been taking drugs over the permitted limit.”

Crash - police arrested Shorter after he crashed his granddad's HyundaiCrash - police arrested Shorter after he crashed his granddad's Hyundai (Image: Newsquest)

The court also heard Shorter’s grandfather had died since the incident.

Mr Lutchfield continued: “Your grandmother, who is now bereaved, is probably reflecting on it as well and wondering what on earth her grandson is up to.”

Shorter was disqualified from driving for 18 months, ordered to pay £154, and must serve 10 weeks in jail concurrent to his current prison sentence which runs until August.

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