A Kenilworth engineer jailed for leading police on a high speed chase, has become one of the first offenders in the UK to win an appeal in front of television cameras.
In May, Oliver Drew Charvill, 20, of Henry Street, was found guilty of the early-hours rampage and sentenced to nine months’ youth custody and a five year driving ban.
But Charvill, who admitted dangerous driving at Warwick Crown Court in July, appealed claiming the ban would hinder his chances of getting work.
His case was one of the first in the UK to be filmed as a ban on cameras in certain courts was lifted last week.
At the hearing, his driving ban was cut to two years by Judge Anthony Morris QC who said the offence had been a one-off instance of “impulsive stupidity”, rather than the actions of an inherently dangerous driver.
Charvill, who was an electrical engineering apprentice, had been out drinking in Kenilworth in May before driving a friend home in his high-powered Seat Ibiza Cupra.
When a police officer tried to stop him for a routine check in Albion Street, he feared being caught over the drink-drive limit, and sped off.
Charvill hit speeds of up to 120mph as the officer gave chase, partly on a notoriously dangerous stretch of the A452.
Judge Morris said he was “extremely fortunate” that no-one was killed or injured.
Charvill eventually ran out of petrol and ran off, leaving his passenger in the car, but was identified by the friend and found hiding on a neighbour’s roof a short time later.
At the appeal, his barrister, Liz Power argued that the ban was excessive and would harm his chance of rehabilitation.
“Getting a job is not easy in the current economic climate and would be even more difficult without a driving licence, she said. “It’s likely that this was a one-off driving incident, never to be repeated.”
Judge Morris said: “As he had no history of driving offences, we are prepared to treat the driving as a piece of impulsive stupidity and not someone who represents a continuing risk to the public.”