Thief was Tasered by police after car chase

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A thief being chased by police held a knife to his own throat as armed officers closed in.

Jack Gates, 24, had fled from his car following a high-speed chase through the streets of Scarborough.

Officers carrying Taser guns caught up with him and ordered him to drop the green-handled hunting knife, but he stopped in his tracks, turned round to face them and put the blade to his throat.

Fearing Gates was about to harm himself, the officers fired the Taser to bring him under control.

Gates, of Trafalgar Square, was arrested and charged with possessing a bladed article in public, as well as driving while disqualified and without insurance.

At the time of the offences, he was on bail for previous offences of aggravated vehicle-taking and dangerous driving, York Crown Court heard.

The first set of offences happened at about 9pm on March 13, when Gates was spotted in an Audi A3 which had been taken from a couple’s driveway in Scarborough following a break-in at their home at about 3.30am on the same day.

Gates was not said to have been involved in the burglary, but came into possession of the vehicle and was spotted driving through Scarborough town centre hours later.

Police activated their blue lights and put the siren on, but Gates sped away at about 70mph onto Burniston Road, where the Audi struck the offside door and wing mirror of a car travelling in the same direction. He then crashed into bollards in St Leonard’s Crescent before getting out of the vehicle and running into Gallows Fields.

Gates was given police bail and a curfew, but in the earrly hours of May 17, police spotted him driving an uninsured Toyota Yaris.

They switched on the blue lights and tried to get Gates to stop, but he sped away into Northstead Manor, where he stopped the vehicle and ran off, before being cornered by Taser officers.

Ms Duffy said Gates later told police he was carrying the knife for his own protection. He appeared for sentence on Friday after admitting all the offences at Scarborough Magistrates’ Court on July 2.

Ms Duffy said Gates had previous convictions for 28 offences.

Defence barrister Taryn Turner said he had mental-health issues aggravated by drug and alcohol abuse.

Judge Stephen Ashurst told Gates he had “blown” the chances the courts had given him in the past. He jailed him for 21 months and gave him a three-year driving ban.