A DRUG dealer who tried to flee police smashed into an oncoming car which had a baby in the front seat.

After he could not find regular work Nathan Doodson set himself up in business dealing cannabis.

But when police spotted him driving an Astra without wearing a seatbelt he tried to make a getaway.

Bolton Crown Court heard how he drove dangerously for several miles at up to 80mph, including undertaking other cars by driving on pavements.

He eventually lost control of the vehicle on Chorley Old Road, Bolton, smashing into a signpost before careering into another oncoming Astra.

In a statement read out in court driver Carrie Humphreys told how she leant across to try and save her one-year-old son, who was in a baby seat on the front seat.

"My child was screaming," she said, adding that she is now fearful of driving. "I feel it has taken my independence away."

Fortunately, although the baby suffered a bruised chest, he was not seriously injured.

After hearing how 21-year-old Doodson, of Withins Lane, Breightmet, has no previous convictions, is remorseful and has since found legitimate employment, Judge Tom Gilbart told him there was a realistic prospect of him being rehabilitated and so sentenced him to 14 months in prison, suspended for two years.

Robert Smith, prosecuting, told how Doodson, who only had a provisional driving licence and no insurance, had fitted his Astra with false number plates, but was spotted by police on Crown Lane, Horwich just after 5pm on August 12 last year.

After initially stopping on Lee Lane , Doodson sped off towards Bolton at up to 80mph on 40mph roads, forcing other drivers out of the way, hurtling over a mini roundabout and driving on pavements.

He eventually crashed on Chorley Old Road near the junction with Old Kiln Lane, jumped out of the car and ran off.

The police helicopter was deployed and he was arrested.

Mr Smith said that when the car was searched a bag containing 2kg of cannabis brownies was found in the boot and in another holdall were 94 snap bags of cannabis.


Cannabis found in the car

Cannabis found in the car


In the bedroom at his home was further cannabis, scales and £1,512 in cash. The brownies were worth £200 and the rest of the cannabis, which weighed over 2kg, was said to be worth £13,525.

Doodson, who now works as a sales advisor, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, drug dealing, driving without a proper licence or insurance, failing to stop for police and fraudulent use of number plates.

Damian Zelazowski, defending, said Doodson had turned to drug dealing to make a living after failing to find regular work but is now remorseful.

"He isn't someone who has a pro-criminal attitude," he said.

"He is someone who made a poor decision and allowed things to snowball."

As part of his suspended sentence Doodson will be electronically tagged and subject to a 7pm to 7am sentence for three months and must do 200 hours of unpaid work.

He was also ordered to participate in 15 days of rehabilitation activities and was banned from driving for two years and until he takes an extended driving test.

Judge Gilbart told him: "These are serious offences. You decided to involve yourself in the supply of controlled drugs for financial gain and knew full well what you were doing was illegal.

"You did it because, as you said, you wanted to make easy money.

"When you encountered the police you took the selfish decision to drive dangerously to try and escape them,

"Your driving was absolutely appalling — it posed a risk to you and others including a little child in the car that you hit.

"You should be utterly ashamed of yourself and your dangerous, selfish actions behind the wheel of that car."