Van driver rams police Land Rover to escape officers

A van driver rammed a police Land Rover, causing more than £17,000 of damage, to escape from officers who suspected the man behind the wheel was driving while disqualified.

Officers in the new patrol vehicle put their blue lights on to stop the white Ford Transit after their automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) alerted them to it, Cambridgeshire Police said.

Instead of stopping, driver Paul Dei-Rossi, 31, rammed the police vehicle several times and led officers on a short chase from Newton to Great Shelford, south of Cambridge.

The police vehicle was badly damaged in the incident captured on an officer's head cam, mainly around the driver's door and the engine.

Dei-Rossi and his passenger Alex Winsor, 33, abandoned the van at a recreation ground and fled on foot.

Winsor was arrested nearby and Dei-Rossi, who left a bank card in the van, was arrested the following day.

Dei-Rossi, of Calvin Close, Cottenham, admitted at Cambridge Crown Court to dangerous driving, criminal damage and driving whilst disqualified.

Paul Dei-Rossi
Paul Dei-Rossi

He was jailed on Tuesday for two years and three months and banned from driving for six years.

Winsor, of Hills Road, Cambridge, admitted possessing cannabis and cocaine and was fined a total of £200.

Dc Martyn Willis said: "The police vehicle was new on the road and the damage caused was extensive, which the judge clearly took a very dim view of."

The incident happened at about 5.15pm on July 31 last year.