A SPLIT-second decision to take off from police has had severe consequences for a motorcyclist.
Not only did Rowan John Watkins crash while trying to avoid the officers, his actions have led to his licence being cancelled and a hefty fine.
The 41-year-old came to attention on the Bandiana Link Road on April 9 after overtaking an unmarked police car.
He was detected at 126km/h in the 80km/h zone.
The officers put on their lights and sirens and Watkins turned around, looked at their vehicle, and took off.
He drove erratically for about 500 metres, swerving in and out of traffic and narrowly missing cars.
The Wodonga Magistrates Court on Tuesday heard it was an “obvious effort to evade police”.
The Charleroi man hit about 150km/h as he headed northbound onto the Hume Highway to NSW.
Albury police were notified of the incident and Watkins crashed at the East Street off-ramp a short time later.
Police obtained his identity and he handed himself into the Wodonga Police Station on May 10.
He made full admissions and was charged with speeding, failing to stop and driving in a manner dangerous.
Lawyer Jason Henke said his client was “extremely lucky”.
“He clearly has insight into the seriousness of the offence,” he said.
“He’s learnt a very valuable lesson.”
Magistrate Ian Watkins said if the rider had simply pulled over, he probably would have just faced a speeding fine.
“It’s quite extraordinary that someone of your age and lack of history comes before the court on these charges. I’m at a loss to understand why,” he said.
He fined Watkins $1500 and cancelled his licence for nine months.