Reckless motorist banned from the roads after narrowly missing police horses and pedestrians in attempt to evade police

A motorist has been banned from driving for three years after swerving onto a pavement to evade the orders of two mounted officers in Porthcawl.

The officers were on patrol with police horses Max and Hamilton when they saw a Vauxhall Vivaro van being driven with a traffic cone stuck under its front grill.

They attempted to stop the vehicle but it sped off towards the funfair. A short time later they saw the same vehicle on New Road and again tried to get it to stop.

Bodyworn video footage captures the moment the reckless driver then swerved around another car and mounted the pavement to drive past the officers.

The police horses had to be held back by the officers to avoid being hit by the vehicle and pedestrians who were on the pavement were also narrowly missed.

The police investigation identified the driver as 54-year-old Paul William Hawkins, from Newport. He appeared at Cardiff Magistrates Court where he pleaded guilty to dangerous driving and was given a three-year driving ban and a suspended six months prison sentence.

Sergeant Joe McElroy said:

“Hawkins’ actions that day were incredibly dangerous; he put our horses and officers, and innocent members of the public, at risk simply to avoid being stopped by police.

“It is sheer good fortune that there were no injuries, and I’m pleased that Hawkins has been banned from the roads.

“While our police horses’ work is varied – from searching for missing people, crowd control and engagement events where they are always extremely popular – some seem to forget that their riders are operational police officers with policing powers.

“When he was requested to stop that day, Hawkins had absolutely no excuse for not doing so or for the actions which followed.”

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