TWO police patrol cars were left with £9,000 worth of damage after officers pursued a fleeing motorist through the streets of Carlisle.

Matthew Neale, 43, was only stopped when a police car rammed his Audi to end the pursuit. The city's crown court heard how he was reported on the evening of July 15 after an incident involving his Audi A4 and a moped in Warwick Road.

The teenage rider said his bike was clipped by the Audi, and he was forced to take avoiding action and flee after Neale - with whom he was in dispute - got out and approached him. The youth was "traumatised".

Police found Neale at the junction of Eastern Way and London Road, with dash-cam footage capturing him weaving during a lengthy pursuit.

"He beckoned with his hands as if he wanted a chase," said prosecutor Holly Nelson.

Officers trailed the Audi along Botchergate and minor roads, with Neale evading capture until police rammed his vehicle close to Nelson Bridge. Miss Nelson said of Neale: "It was a prolonged period of bad driving involving deliberate disregard for others."

He admitted careless and dangerous driving.

Marion Weir, defending, said Neale had a complex mental health background, adding: "There is much improvement in his health since the offences."

Judge David Potter suspended a six-month jail term. Neale, of St Helens Road, Carlisle, who must undergo rehabilitation, was given a two year driving ban and must take an extended re-test.

It was luck rather than judgement that nobody was injured by the defendant's bad driving, said Judge Potter.