Man stole mate’s van before crashing it

Latest crime and court news from the Suffolk Free Press, suffolkfreepress.co.uk, @sfpsudbury on Twitter
Latest crime and court news from the Suffolk Free Press, suffolkfreepress.co.uk, @sfpsudbury on Twitter

A Sudbury man who stole his friend’s car and crashed it, causing thousands of pounds of damage, has been given 200 hours of unpaid work.

Kynan Gowans, 21, of Meadow Lane, admitted aggravated vehicle taking and causing £5,000 of damage, as well as driving without insurance or a licence at Bury St Edmunds Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.

Rosalind Cappleman, prosecuting, said: “The defendant had been out drinking with friends and a colleague, Luke Day, on Sunday, September 15.

“At 10pm, they left Mr Day’s van and walked back to his home. Gowans asked to borrow the keys to the van to get his work boots and said he’d give the keys back the next day.”

“At 11pm, Mr Day received a call from his boss saying the van had been involved in a collision.”

She said Gowans had taken the vehicle and hit a white Renault van, belonging to Martin Dykes, which was parked in Waldingfield Road.

“Mr Dykes was in bed but heard a loud bang,” she said. “He went outside and found his van had severe damage to the rear doors.”

Mr Day’s van, worth around £3,500, was written off, while the damage to Mr Dykes’ van could cost up to £3,000.

In mitigation, Mark Thompson said his client and Mr Day worked together as tree surgeons and had gone for a drink, with Mr Day parking in Waldingfield Road.

“He has a difficult relationship with his mother, with whom he was living, and decided to drive to a quiet location and sleep in the car that night,” he said.

Gowans was given a 12-month community order with 200 hours of unpaid work and banned from driving for 12 months. He was fined £270 and made to pay £600 compensation to Mr Dykes and Mr Day, and £85 in costs costs.