Young teen eludes police in stolen car

A high-speed chase across the south-west yesterday is believed to have involved a boy in his early teens driving a stolen vehicle.

A high-speed chase across the south-west yesterday is believed to have involved a boy in his early teens driving a stolen vehicle.

A HIGH-SPEED chase across the south-west yesterday is believed to have involved a boy in his early teens driving a stolen vehicle.

The young driver, believed to be only 13 years old, was first detected in a stolen Ford sedan at Tyrendarra before a short police pursuit along the Princes Highway between Yambuk and Port Fairy.

Police called off the pursuit about 4.30pm with the young motorist allegedly reaching 155km/h along the highway, roughly eight kilometres west of Port Fairy.

Sergeant Sally Slingsby, of Camperdown police, said the motorist, “possibly aged 13,” was last seen driving east of Port Fairy about 5pm.

She said it was understood the Ford sedan had been stolen from Portland on Saturday about 6.30am. 

“We appeal to anyone with any information about the vehicle or saw where the vehicle headed to contact police,” Sergeant Slingsby said.

“The vehicle is a blue Ford Laser and was seen being driven erratically.”

Also yesterday afternoon, a driver topped 200km/h to escape police in another pursuit near Darlington. 

The offending vehicle — a black Commodore stationwagon — was first spotted on the Hamilton Highway near Darlington at 2.13pm travelling at speeds around 180km/h.

A police officer from Camperdown began the chase, following the vehicle north on to Darlington-Carranballac Road.

The Commodore accelerated to speeds above 200km/h during the chase, leading Sergeant Greg Cressall of Warrnambool police to call off the pursuit at 2.19pm. 

The Commodore, believed to contain only the driver, was seen soon after turning right on to the Glenelg Highway, heading east in the Skipton/Ballarat direction.

Sergeant Cressall said highway patrol officers with “stop sticks” (road spikes) were unable to get within the path of the pursuit in time.

He said conditions along the sealed Darlington-Carranballac Road  were dry with no traffic during the chase, but as speeds hit 200km/h near the Glenelg Highway it was decided to call off the pursuit.

“You have to be mindful that as soon as there’s a risk to anyone else, the pursuit has to be terminated,” Sergeant Cressall said.

“The Camperdown member had good local knowledge ... and the pursuit continued until we could identify the motor vehicle, but that was secondary to the safety of other road users.”

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