A NORTHWICH man who wrapped his BMW around an electricity pole after drinking and didn’t show up for his own trial has been brought before the court.

Richard Cunliffe, of Middlewich Road, initially denied dangerous driving after the crash on Marston Lane, near Four Lanes Garage, on October 15, last year.

The 28-year-old told officers his BMW had a tracking fault, and had been ‘crabbing’, but he still took a corner at 50mph on an unlit lane at night when there was standing water on the road.

He was breathalysed at the scene, which confirmed he’d been drinking, but officers couldn’t get a sample for evidence as he needed medical treatment.

Cunliffe was set to stand trial on September 29, but failed to turn up to court. 

He was found guilty in his absence, and a warrant was issued for his arrest.

When he heard about the warrant, he turned himself in to police and was remanded in custody.

He was brought before Chester magistrates on Tuesday, November 28, where he was due to be sentenced.

Prosecuting, Andrew Page, said Cunliffe is of previous good character, with only cautions for unrelated matters in 2008 and 2010.

He added Cunliffe is currently out of work and living on benefits.

Magistrates asked Cunliffe, who had no solicitor, to explain why he hadn’t turned up for his trial.

Cunliffe apologised to the court, and said his life has ‘spiralled out of control’ since the crash.

The chairman of the bench said as Cunliffe said nothing in mitigation which could help magistrates bring the case within their sentencing powers, he had no choice but to send Cunliffe’s case to Chester Crown Court.

He was released on unconditional bail, and will appear before a judge on Tuesday, January 2.

Magistrates issued an immediate interim driving ban.