A DRUG driver chased by four police cars around a small village after speeding the wrong way up roads and switching his lights off has been sentenced.

Daryl Finch pleaded guilty to two counts of drug driving and driving dangerous in Crowmarsh Gifford, Wallingford on April 1 last year.

The 37-year-old was sentenced at Oxford Crown Court on Thursday (February 8) to 16 months imprisonment, suspended for two years.

READ MORE: Jury see strangulation video showing murder-accused's 'sexual fascination'

Opening the case, prosecutor Sarita Bashir said police received a report at about 11.35pm about a white Ford transit van ‘acting suspiciously’ in Cox’s Lane, off the Crowmarsh Gifford roundabout.

Police arrived at the lane at about 12.05pm and followed the van towards the caravan park in The Street where the ladder at the top of the van was knocked off due to a height restriction barrier.

Ms Bashir said: “Police thought this was a deliberate manoeuvre as it stopped the police accessing the caravan park at the point.”

Police then caught Finch again driving up Benson Lane towards Benson and then, when on the A4074, Finch made a sudden left turn and switched his lights off.

The officer then called for support and, for about an hour, four police vehicles then pursued Finch who ‘kept looping over the same areas going back and forth’ and switching his lights on and off in Wallingford.

READ MORE: Maserati driver ordered to pay more than £1k for tailgating

At one point, he turned off the A4074 into Benson Lane, a no-entry turn, before turning into a residential estate and hitting a parked car.

He later hit one of the police vehicles, causing it to spin 180 degrees.

Ms Bashir said it appeared Finch was trying to return to the caravan park as his mother lived nearby.

Finch was eventually stopped at about 1am and was made to perform a road swipe test where he testing positive for cannabis and cocaine.

He made immediate admissions to being the driver of the vehicle and said he was ‘having a mental health crisis’ and he doesn’t know why he did not stop the vehicle.

Defending Finch, his barrister Aubrey Fletcher said that Finch has had difficulties with drug addiction and mental health issues in the past. He also cares for his mother who had been diagnosed with cancer.

READ MORE: Murder-accused had pet microchip embedded in body

“He has taken responsibility for what has occurred,” she added. “He is determined to tackle these drug demons.”

Sentencing Finch, of Gerrards Green, Beaminster, Dorset, Recorder Joseph Hart said: “I accept that you are remorseful and the pursuit was born out of panic as you had been taking drugs.”

He was also handed a drug rehabilitation requirement, 200 hours of unpaid work, 20 rehabilitation activity days, £400 in court costs, and a two-year disqualification from driving.