Drunk Teenager Filmed On Snapchat Riding On Car Bonnet Travelling At 50mph
A teenager was filmed on Snapchat hanging onto the bonnet of a car driving at 50mph in snowy conditions, a court heard.
Oliver Barton, 19, was captured on video in the early hours of 24 January, following a drinking session.
He was filmed by 'main cameraman' Connor Fleming, 20, who was sat in a back seat, while Lucas Blanchard, 20, was driving the red Volkswagen Polo.
Fleming had also filmed driver Joseph Clayton, 19, in a separate incident earlier that evening, in which Clayton 'perched himself half out' of a blue VW Polo and sat 'on the top of the driver's door hanging out of the car'.
At one point, Fleming even had to take the wheel, as both of Clayton's hands were outside the vehicle.
Judge Simon Medland QC said it was a 'miracle' that no-one was injured during the stunts, condemning their behaviour as 'utterly disgraceful and dangerous almost beyond belief'.
Prosecutor Stephen Parker told Burnley Crown Court that emergency services had initially been called to a road traffic collision at the roundabout of Bocholt Way and Bacup Road in Rawtenstall, Lancashire, at 12.15am.
The red Polo was being driven by Blanchard, who was over the limit, when the vehicle went onto the wrong side of the round before mounting the kerb and hit a lamppost.
While there were no 'independent witnesses' prepared to provide statements, Parker said police had been approached by someone who had seen 'torch lights' in the red Polo and in another vehicle 'that he thought was travelling in convoy with it'.
Police then seized the four defendants' mobile phones and found Snapchat content saved on Fleming's device.
Parker said: "That shows not the whole conduct of the defendants that evening, but it is apparent that the filming of these defendants recovered are mere snapshots of their behaviour.
"There was no footage of the actually crash but there are effectively extracts of windows in time of their offending.
"They had been in various pubs. There were photographs and films of pints of lager on the table."
Referring to the incident involving the blue Polo, driven by Clayton, Parker said: "What is shown on the footage is Clayton, who had been the driver of that vehicle, get from the drivers seat and perch himself half out of the vehicle, sitting on the top of the drivers door hanging out of the car.
"At the same time Fleming, who is the front seat passenger, is both filming the conduct and also taking hold of the steering wheel of the blue car because the co-defendant Clayton of course doesn't have his hands on the wheel. They are both outside the car."
Describing the incident involving the red Polo, driven by Blanchard, Parker continued: "On this occasion Blanchard is the driver, Fleming is once again acting as cameraman filming from the back of the car, and Oliver Barton is at times a front seat passenger and at times a passenger on the bonnet of the vehicle.
"It is driven at speed throughout the Rossendale Valley in the early hours of the morning with the temperature at or about freezing and with snow on the ground.
"When [Barton] is on the bonnet they reach speeds of approximately 50mph. When he is back inside the vehicle there are points when it is 60mph and points when it goes well over 60mph.
"There is reference by the defendants [in the camera video] at one point saying they are doing 90mph and then correcting it by saying it might be 70mph.
"By their own comments they are going significantly in excess of the speed limits. They are doing double the speed limits if not more so.
"It's not possible to quantify if all the roads are 30mph zones or 40mph zones."
Blanchard, Fleming and Clayton all pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, while Fleming also admitted to using a mobile phone while driving and Blanchard to drink driving - after providing a reading of 72mg in 100ml of breath, more than twice the 35mg legal limit.
They were all given 12-month community orders with unpaid work requirements, driving bans and electronically monitored curfews until 2 January 2020.
Barton pleaded guilty to allowing himself to be carried on part of a vehicle while in motion at an earlier magistrates hearing, before being fined £100 ($130) and ordered to pay £85 ($110) costs and a £30 ($38) victim surcharge.
Sentencing, Judge Medland QC said: "Your conduct was utterly disgraceful on that night and dangerous almost beyond belief.
"How you didn't seriously injure somebody I will never understand.
"Further, you thought it right and amusing to make that part of a Snapchat story, all accompanied by sparkling pictures of pints of lager.
"You obviously thought it was a right laugh.
"I trust as you sit in the Crown Court now as convicted criminals, I hope that you understand how far wrong you are."
Featured Image Credit: MEN Media