A 'DANGEROUS' drink driver spotted drunk at the Westgate Shopping Centre car park was found nearly 40 miles away passed out at the wheel in Slough.

When police first tried to stop John Sawyer - in his blue Audi A3 - an officer had to jump out of the way as he sped off to make his escape.

Later, the 22-year-old of Hampden Close, Chalgrove, crashed into a police van to evade capture before he was eventually found asleep in his car and tested for alcohol.

Sawyer had already admitted the drunken rampage, pleading guilty to dangerous driving and being in charge of a vehicle with excess alcohol, ahead of his sentencing hearing at Oxford Crown Court today.

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Outlining the case prosecutor Robert Lindsey said that police were first alerted to 'an intoxicated male' - Sawyer - at the Westgate car park exit barriers at about 3.20am on September 7 last year.

When officers arrived and called for him to stop he 'mouthed oh f**k' and as the barrier rose he drove off.

One of the officers said he had to jump out of the way of the fleeing car and he struck the car window with his baton.

Police then went to his home address in Chalgrove in a bid to corner him and while there Sawyer didn't stop for officers and instead collided with a police van to make his escape.

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The court heard that van was damaged in the crash, costing the force some £3,000.

Sawyer was eventually found at 6.45am that morning asleep at the wheel of his car in Slough.

Taken to Maidenhead police station he was tested for alcohol and a breath test showed he had 59 mcg of alcohol in 100 ml of breath.

He went on to plead guilty and was sentenced today.

At that hearing it was also revealed that he has four previous convictions, and was subject to a previously imposed suspended sentence for affray and having an offensive weapon.

In mitigation his defence barrister Martin Lewis said Sawyer had been to a nightclub that night with his girlfriend.

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He said his client had 'very stupidly and very recklessly' committed the offence and he had shown 'genuine remorse' for what he had done.

Mr Lewis went on to say that Sawyer had not drunk any alcohol since the offence.

Sentencing, Judge Peter Ross said: "You would have been extremely drunk when some three hours later you were tested for the level of alcohol in your system.

"You were probably around three times the legal limit when you got into that car that night.

"It is testament to the views of the public now of drink drivers that a member of the public [first] contacted the police.

"It is a terrifying thought that someone as drunk as you covered so many miles that night."

Sawyer was jailed for 18 months, banned from driving for two years and will pay a statutory victim surcharge.