Teenager ploughed into pedestrians after taking father's BMW without permission

Five victims left with 'life-changing physical and emotional injuries', police say

Tuesday 24 July 2018 14:28
CCTV footage of collision involving a BMW and five pedestrians in Canvey

A teenager who left five pedestrians with life-changing injuries after ploughing into them on the pavement with his father's BMW, has been detained for three years and three months.

Max Maxwell, 18, took the car without permission a week after he had passed his driving test, Basildon Crown Court heard.

He lost control after overtaking another vehicle at high speed on the approach to a roundabout in Essex, swinging onto the wrong side of the road and mounting a footpath, before crashing into the pedestrians.

CCTV footage released by Essex Police showed the victims, all friends in their 20s, being knocked down and flung across the pavement before Maxwell climbed out of the car window and fled the scene.

The force said they were left with "life-changing physical and emotional injuries". Sergeant Steve Holmes added it was "a miracle" no one was killed.

The men had been on their way to watch the Grand National at a local pub on 14 April, the court heard.

Maxwell, from Canvey, handed himself in to police 20 hours after the incident.

He was sentenced to three years and three months in a young offenders' institution, having pleaded guilty to three counts of causing serious injury by dangerous driving, two counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm, one count of aggravated vehicle taking and one count of driving without insurance.

He was also banned from driving for more than five years and seven months.

Police said the victims had been discharged from hospital and were recovering from their injuries at home.

Sgt Holmes said: "He ploughed into the five men, causing some horrific life-changing injuries and ongoing emotional and psychological trauma. He had absolutely no concern for them whatsoever and ran away. He then hid from us for almost 20 hours before handing himself in.

He added: "It is a miracle that none of the victims were killed. I would like to thank them and their families for being patient and understanding throughout this investigation. They have conducted themselves with great dignity, despite having endured the most horrific ordeal."

Press Association contributed to this report