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Man who took boy on a joyride is jailed for a year
A PERSISTENT offender who took a ten-year-old boy on a joyride and crashed the stolen car was today jailed for more than a year.
Samuel Booth caused almost £4,000 damage to the Renault Megane when he skidded and smashed into a van in Middlesbrough in August.
The air-bags in the hatchback went off, and Booth, 20, and his young passenger fled from the scene in Bankfields Road, Grangetown.
The driver handed himself in three days later and claimed he could not remember the crash because he had taken two sleeping tablets.
Teesside Crown Court heard that Booth has repeatedly breached an asbo and has been committing crimes since he was aged just 14.
Judge Simon Bourne-Arton, QC, said he had flouted every non-custodial form of punishment he has ever been given by the courts.
He was jailed for 13 months after admitting aggravated vehicle taking and breaching a suspended sentence imposed a month before the crash.
The suspended term was handed out after Booth was caught with 11 bags of cannabis when police were called to a domestic incident.
His lawyer tried to persuade the judge to let Booth walk free – but admitted his plea might be seen by some as “bizarre and ludicrous”.
Andrew Teate, mitigating, said the case was unusual and claimed his client had changed his ways since the birth of his first child.
“He accepts what he did was a further act of anti-social behaviour, and people were in jeopardy because of his actions,” said Mr Teate.
“He can take no credit that no person was injured as a result of this, however. It is simply fortunate that that was the case.
“He tells me he now lives a life with his partner and child and asks to be a good father to that child.
“Your Honour may take the view that he can be a father when he is released from custody.
“He accepts he needs to change his ways, not only for himself, but for his mother, for his partner and for his young child.”
Booth, of Monmouth Road, Grangetown, also admitted driving without insurance or a licence and failing to stop at the scene of an accident, and was banned from the roads for three years.