Officer pulls gun on 21-year-old driver

IT TOOK a raised gun to stop young unlicensed driver Sean Jamie Rutherford on his getaway from police when he drove at an officer while under the influence of ice and cannabis.

The 21-year-old, who faced Gympie Magistrates Court this week on nine charges, was jailed over the car chase, which came close to having a violent ending.

The court heard Rutherford was driving on the Bruce Hwy at Gympie in the early afternoon of October 29 when police saw him cut across a vehicle towing a caravan.

Rutherford then turned into Cross St, where the car was seen to fishtail across double lines.

Police followed the driver, who took off at speed and failed to stop at a stop sign before driving through the back yards of three Wickham St residences to evade police.

Rutherford then drove up a concrete driveway towards the road at about 40kmh, where an officer was standing with a raised hand to stop the vehicle.

The car continued towards the officer, who, fearing for his life, drew his revolver.

Magistrate M. Baldwin told Rutherford, who had a 14-page criminal history, it had been horrendous of him to place an officer in a position of having to draw a gun.

She jailed Rutherford for nine months, with a parole release date of February 29 next year, and banned him from driving for two years.

For trespassing and stealing fuel from a service station the day before, Rutherford was given suspended jail terms.

"You either make the changes now, or you'll spend the vast majority of the future in jail," Ms Baldwin told him.

Gympie Times

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