Drunk driver, 24, banned for 15th time

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A driver who had been banned from driving 14 times has been sent to prison for forcing a police car onto the pavement.

A court was told that the patrol car had to be driven onto the pavement to avoid John Cottam's speeding Mercedes in the early hours of the morning.

When police eventually caught up with Cottam, they discovered the true extent of his appalling criminal record.

Cottam also failed a breath test and was found to be twice the legal alcohol limit and is now beginning a 10-month prison sentence.

Preston Crown Court prosecutor Roger Baldwin said it was 5am on July 21 last year when the police car had to take emergency action to avoid colliding with the Mercedes on Collingwood Road, Chorley.

Eventually the Mercedes A Class was driven up a cul-de-sac and Cottam was arrested by officers after a struggle.

Father-of-two, Cottam, 24, of Cotswold House, Cotswold Road, Chorley, pleaded guilty to charges of dangerous driving, driving while disqualified, with excess alcohol, having no insurance and possession of a wrap of crack cocaine found on him when he was arrested.

As well as the prison term he was banned from driving for four years with the requirement to take an extended re-test.

The court heard he had 87 previous offences on his record, including the 14 of previous driving while disqualified.

Because of his prison sentence he will now miss the birth of his third child.

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