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'getting away lightly' Driver jailed after speeding towards garda car and narrowly missing pedestrians

Dean Blake (33) was serving a 30-year disqualification at the time, a court heard

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A driver who sped towards a patrol car and narrowly missed pedestrians was serving a 30-year disqualification at the time, a court heard.

Dean Blake (33) claimed the birth of his son in December 2020 had forced him to completely turn his life around, and he was no longer coming to the attention of gardaí.

He had also had an "exceptionally difficult" 2021 following the tragic death of a cousin in a road traffic accident, which devastated him, his solicitor said.

Judge Gerard Jones said Blake was a danger to the public. The judge jailed Blake for one month and imposed a 20-year driving ban, telling the defendant he was "getting away very lightly" with the sentence.

The defendant, of Ratoath Drive in Finglas, admitted dangerous driving and driving without insurance or a driving licence on January 17, 2020.

Garda Niall Mangan told Blanchardstown District Court he was on routine mobile patrol in Finglas when he saw a motorist wearing a red and black mask covering his face.

This was before the pandemic, Gda Mangan said, and it aroused his suspicions.

Gardaí signalled for the vehicle to stop but it failed to do so, driving along the Navan Road at speed, and into the Ashbrook housing estate, where it narrowly missed a number of pedestrians and drove at speed towards the patrol car.

Gda Mangan said the car was spotted 10 minutes later in the Finglas area, and gardaí gave chase on foot to the driver, who went into a house at Abbotstown Drive.

Gardaí followed Blake into the house where he was arrested and later charged.

The court heard the defendant had 81 previous convictions and he received a 30-year driving ban in 2014.

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Defence solicitor Fiona Brennan said Blake had not come to Garda attention since this incident.

Ms Brennan said Blake's cousin had died in a traffic accident earlier this year and this had had a profound effect on the defendant, who was still grieving his loss.

Blake's son was born in December 2020 and the defendant had completely turned his life around since the birth and was dealing with his drug addiction, the solicitor said.

Blake's partner and her mother had also written letters to the court in his support, Ms Brennan added.

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