A DRUG addict who led police on a chase through Blackburn has been spared jail after a court heard his brother had died two days before the incident.

Judge Mark Brown told Mohammed Sadiq that he accepted his judgement may have been impaired because he was grieving over his brother at the time and he had shown remorse by pleading guilty to the offence.

Prosecuting, David Clarke said off-duty Sgt Andy Ainsworth was driving in Bank Top at 9.30pm on October 11 when he noticed a Volkswagen Golf.

Police dashcam footage played in court showed the car set off at speed along Highfield Road, Moseley Street and Grimshaw Park with the officer’s vehicle in pursuit and his blue lights flashing.

The car was driven through two sets of traffic lights on red before speeding along Canterbury Street before stopping in Fawcett Close, where 46-year-old Sadiq and a female passenger got out and ran off.

Mr Clarke said Sgt Ainsworth chased after Sadiq and caught up with him in a nearby road.

The court heard Sadiq refused to surrender or remove his hands from the back of his trousers and so, fearing the defendant might have a weapon, the officer struck him with his cosh.

When Sadiq, of Hollin Bridge Street, Blackburn was searched police found a wrap of heroin in his pocket.

Mr Clarke said: “He said the Golf belonged to a friend. He knew he had no insurance cover so he put false registration plates on the vehicle. Having bought some drugs and having seen the police car behind him he said he panicked.”

Sadiq pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, possession of heroin, driving without insurance or a licence and breaching a conditional discharge for theft.

Defending, Neil Howard said his client was a father-of-two with a chronic drug addiction.

Mr Howard: “His brother passed away in October. His own health is in a terrible state. He suffers from COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease).

“He has mental health problems, drug-induced psychosis. He has received medical advice that he will die unless he stops using street drugs because his immune system is so poor.”

Sentencing Sadiq to six months imprisonment, but suspending it for two years, Judge Brown said: “I have at the forefront of my mind that on October 9 you suffered the tragic death of your brother and therefore I’m willing to accept that your judgement was perhaps clouded when you came to be involved in a police pursuit some two days later.”

Sadiq was banned from driving for 12 months, ordered to complete 15 rehabilitation days and a six-month drug rehabilitation order.