UPDATE: Maclean man faces court over high-speed pursuit
UPDATE: A magistrate has described the actions of a Maclean man who lead police on a high-speed pursuit through the town as "extremely dangerous" when he appeared in court this afternoon.
Douglas Darcy Pearce, 27, entered pleas of guilty to a number of driving offences, including police pursuit and drive in a manner dangerous in Grafton Local Court Tuesday afternoon.
Pearce was arrested after he attempted to flee from police on River St, Maclean on Monday afternoon. According to police facts, Pearce was sighted by police at 3.15pm, who refused to stop when directed by police and lead police on a three-minute, three kilometre pursuit, reaching speeds of up to 100km/h in a 50km/h zone.
According to Pearce's solicitor Michael Lantis, Pearce made a mistake in deciding to drive a short distance to the river for a swim on a hot afternoon and when he saw the flashing lights of the police he panicked.
Mr Lantis said his client knew he was disqualified from driving and was not supposed to be behind the wheel, but became distraught at the prospect of not seeing his two young children again and made a poor decision in attempting to escape.
In making an application for bail, Mr Lantis said there was a causal link between Pearce's mental health and his offending, and said his client expressed a desire to engage with the Aboriginal Health Service to address his mental health issues.
Magistrate Karen Stafford was not convinced by Mr Lantis's submissions, and said that Pearce was on bail for a number of unrelated offences at the time of the pursuit, and while a three minute chase might not sound like much, it was "extremely dangerous" and the risk to the community was "extremely high".
"I take into account he is a family man who panicked, but the purpose of bail is to protect the community and he endangered the community through his actions," Ms Stafford said.
"I'm not convinced there are any measures that could mitigate the risk of further serious offending, and bail is refused."
Pearce will next appear in Grafton Local Court on March 11.
EARLIER: A 27-year-old Maclean man will appear at Grafton Court today after allegedly leading police on a pursuit through the Scottish township.
Police have confirmed the disqualified driver was observed in River Street, Maclean yesterday afternoon driving a black Holden Commodore with incorrect number plates.
After an attempt to pull the vehicle over, the male allegedly fled the scene.
It is understood the male drove at speeds of up to 100km/h through the 50km/h zones before he was arrested at Jubilee Street, Townsend a short time later.
Police have charged the man with a range of offences including dangerous driving, police pursuit, driving with a disqualified licence, driving an unregistered vehicle and having incorrect licence plates.