Brian Kelly, who is known as a serial offender, has been jailed for more than three years for the theft of a cab which he subsequently crashed into a wall after a joyride. Kelly, who is well known to the police as he has a string of criminal convictions and has previously spent a substantial amount of time in prison, spotted a taxi with the keys in the ignition in a valeting station and couldn’t resist the temptation to steal it and take it for a spin around town.
He picked up a female friend before speeding through the centre of Kirkcaldy. Unfortunately, he drove dangerously and ignored a series of red lights before crashing the taxi into a wall. The woman in the cab with him suffered a broken leg in the crash. When police rushed to the scene along with a number of passers-by who were looking to help, Kelly compounded his criminal offence by pulling a knife, threatening those who came near him and running away towards a flour mill complex. The police set off in pursuit and were again threatened with the knife. Eventually, the police had no option but to use CS gas in order to bring Kelly to justice.
Susannah Hutchison, a fiscal deputy, spoke to Kirkcaldy Sheriff Court and said that a witness heard several loud bangs and saw that a taxi had crashed into a wall. Witnesses saw Kelly get out of the cab and tend to the woman in the passenger seat who was trapped. The police were informed and soon arrived at the scene only to be confronted by a knife as they tried to arrest Kelly. He shouted at the police and ran towards the flour mill compound. When one of the officers caught up with him, Kelly once again turned around and brandished the knife. However, the PC was armed with CS gas and used it twice on Kelly to disable him and make the arrest.
Kelly is 31 years of age and pleaded guilty to charges of dangerous driving, operating a vehicle while disqualified, theft of a taxi, failure to give breath samples when asked by police, possessing a knife and threatening police officers and members of the public with the weapon. The offence took place in March 2012 and Kelly was on bail at the time.
His defence lawyer, Jim Literick, told the court that Kelly has been in jail for all but 14 months in the last 15 years. He stated that when Kelly saw the keys in the ignition and the opportunity to take the car, his instincts took over. Grant McCulloch was the sheriff in charge of the case and he sentenced Kelly to 3 years and 5 months in prison. He told Kelly that this was disgraceful behaviour but was unfortunately expected from him. He also stated that Kelly had no regard for traffic regulations and that this was his third conviction for dangerous driving.