Newbiggin Hall motor menace avoids jail after breaching driving ban for eighth time

A motor menace has avoided jail after clocking up his eighth conviction for breaching his driving ban.

Time and time again and despite being subject to lengthy disqualifications, Anthony Midgley has showed his contempt for court orders after repeatedly getting behind the wheel, sometimes even while drunk. Earlier this year, the 56-year-old has proved that he isn’t getting wiser as he’s gets older after he was once more caught driving a car.

A court heard that, on this occasion, Midgley was travelling in a Peugeot 207 when he narrowly avoided crashing into a marked police car. Subsequent checks by officers quickly revealed that he was a banned driver and had a lengthy record for not adhering to his bans.

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Now, Midgley, of Denton Gate, in Newbiggin Hall, Newcastle, has avoided jail by a “whisker” after he appeared at Newcastle Magistrates’ Court to plead guilty to driving while disqualified and driving with no insurance. Instead, he was given an eight-week prison sentence, suspended for 18 months, and was ordered to pay £85 costs and a £154 victim surcharge. He was also banned from the roads for 31 months.

Niamh Reading, prosecuting, said officers were on patrol at around 1pm on February 18 this year when they got asked to attend Newbiggin Lane, in Newcastle. On arrival, they spoke to other constables, who had stopped Midgley in his Peugeot.

Miss Reading continued: “They had stopped the defendant’s vehicle after it nearly collided with the police officers’ patrol vehicle. The driver had been detained and was identified as the defendant. Checks were conducted on the police’s national computer, which identified the defendant as a disqualified driver.”

The court heard that Midgley had seven past convictions for driving while disqualified, his last one being in July 2021, when he was also convicted of driving with excess alcohol. On that occasion, he was given a 40-month ban.

Paul Oxonard, defending, said Midgley had only driven a short distance and hadn’t done it for “reward”. He added: “It was his girlfriend’s car and he was doing her a favour. He thought his ban was up. He’s also suffered a recent injury, which has affected his mobility.”

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