AN intoxicated driver led a police chase before being found with cocaine and a lock knife in his car.

Simon Merryfield was first noticed by police officers for his ‘dangerous driving’ in Richmond Park Road in Bournemouth.

The 46-year-old had been seen overtaking a vehicle at 60mph, which was double the speed limit in the residential area.

Prosecting, Ryan Murray said when police activated their lights to pull Merryfield over, he failed to stop.

A short police chase occurred, with Merryfield reportedly “picking up his speed” and “weaving” onto the other carriageway to overtake more vehicles.

The defendant was then blocked in by the police vehicle, before being dealt with by officers.

Merryfield, described as appearing “under the influence” was recorded as having 54 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath - over the limit of 35microgrammes.

A pint glass and can of lager was found in his car, whilst a search of him uncovered a small keyring lock knife and two packets containing suspected cocaine totalling between three to four grams.

Merryfield, of Bennett Road in Bournemouth, appeared at Bournemouth Crown Court on Friday, November 24, for sentencing.

He was charged with dangerous driving, failure to stop, driving under the influence of alcohol, possession of a knife and possession of a Class A drug.

He also faced a charge of failure to answer to court, having failed to appear at Poole Magistrates’ Court to give a plea last month.

The court heard that Merryfield had 25 convictions for 64 offences, including two previous matters for drink driving in 2005 and 2014.

Mitigating, Lucie Taylor said her client was “disappointed in his actions” and showed “genuine remorse”, adding that he wants help addressing his behaviour.

Ms Taylor added: “He does have a significant list of convictions, but whilst they are frequent until 2014, there is then a 4-year gap in offending, and then nothing since 2019.

“This is a man who has previously offended but is now capable or keeping himself out of trouble “He is someone who is a good father, and is valued at work.”

Addressing the charge of possessing a knife, Ms Taylor said the lock knife was something Merryfield used for work, and there was “no suggestion it was produced or used in any way to threaten”.

Summarising the incident, which occurred on Saturday, August 5, Judge Jonathan Fuller KC said: “Shortly before half past midnight, a police officer had his attention drawn to your pick-up truck which was driving into Richmond Park Road.

“You overtook a vehicle in front of you and he thought you were exceeding the speed limit so he put his lights on, and you didn’t stop.

“His statement is that you then picked up your speed and weaved onto the other carriage way to overtake other vehicles.

“You then come to a stop - it wasn’t a long chase.

“You are a man aged 46 and you have a very bad record for driving offences but what is clear from your record is that there has been a dropping off of offences over the years.”

Merryfield was handed a 15-month prison sentence suspended for two years.