A KIDDERMINSTER man "took off like a rocket" away from police because he thought he was over the drink drive limit.

Adam Curtis, of Sculthorpe Road, was on his way to pick up a friend in Jubilee Drive when his Ford Fiesta swerved round a corner at speed - straight into the path of an oncoming police car.

The 21-year-old admitted careless driving but denied dangerous driving when he appeared, unrepresented, at Kidderminster Magistrates' Court on Friday (July 12).

The court heard how Curtis turned the corner from Goldthorn Road at such speed that he crossed into the right hand lane, causing the vehicle to tilt onto two wheels.

A police chase ensued, which saw Curtis' car reaching top speeds of 70mph in a 30mph zone, and 100mph in a 70mph zone, the court heard.

Giving evidence, PS John Mounter, of West Mercia Police, said the car did not slow down as it emerged from the junction with Woodbury Drive.

Officers lost sight of the vehicle just before 2am, but received a call from another patrol car at around 2.20am to say the Fiesta had been spotted in Stourport Road.

PS Mounter said: "We tried to merge into the traffic behind the vehicle but the driver seemed to know we were behind him and accelerated harshly. He took off like a rocket.

"The vehicle was travelling far in excess of the speed limit. My estimate would be 100mph. It went into a 30mph residential area and we abandoned the chase."

Curtis was located at his home address two hours later and was arrested.

During interview, Curtis told police he "panicked" and "put his foot down" when he saw the marked police car as he thought he was over the drink drive limit, however a breathalyser test gave a negative result.

He was charged with careless driving, but this was later changed to dangerous driving.

Taking the stand, Curtis said the speeds given by police were "overestimates".

He said: "I actually think I was doing 40 or 45 mph in Jubilee Drive. There's no way on earth you can get to 60 mph in that short stretch of road."

He added: "I don't usually drive like that. I'd been under a lot of stress and I'd had a row with my partner that evening. I was stupid and I didn't think."

Prosecuting, Shawn Williams told Curtis he "could have killed somebody".

Finding him guilty of dangerous driving, chief magistrate Nicola Phillips said to Curtis: "You had consumed enough alcohol to be concerned that you were over the limit.

"You showed deliberate disregard for the safety of others. This falls far below the standard which is obvious to a competent driver."

Curtis was disqualified from driving and the case was deferred to crown court for sentencing.