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A fake police officer who ‘aggressively’ chased a pregnant woman and made her fear she was going to be abducted has been jailed.
Ian Fieldhouse ordered the mum-to-be to get out of her vehicle and attempted to drag her from it during a ‘petrifying’ 35-minute chase.
Terrified that she was about to be attacked and kidnapped, the ‘shocked’ victim sped off with her car door still open in a desperate bid to escape the convicted robber, Birmingham Live reports.
She was only able to flee once police closed in on businessman Fieldhouse and deployed a stinger to put a stop to the high-speed Black Country pursuit.
‘Embarrassed’ Fieldhouse later insisted he only lied about being a police officer because he thought the woman was speeding and wanted to talk to her about it.
Wolverhampton Crown Court heard the woman was convinced she would be ‘rammed off’ the road and crash after being hunted by the 37-year-old.
In a statement at the time, she said: “I was eight months pregnant at the time of the offence and during the incident I was petrified.
“I’m now concerned that the stress of this will affect my baby. I was concerned he was going to try and attack me and my friend and abduct us.
“I was fearing for my safety and my life.”
The expectant mother was driving in Wolverhampton with her friend when they spotted Fieldhouse flashing his van’s lights at them at about 10.15pm on January 29 last year.
She tried to ‘shake off’ the defendant by taking several turns but he pulled his van across the road, forcing her to slam on her brakes.
The female driver quickly turned her car around but Fieldhouse continued to pursue them, prosecutor Naomi Nelson-Cofie said.
She then decided to stop driving, in an attempt to ‘deter’ Fieldhouse, but he got out of his van and approached the pair.
The passenger opened her door and asked ‘what he had been playing at’ before Fieldhouse claimed he was an off-duty police officer and told them to get out of the car.
Wolverhampton Crown Court.
(Image: PA Archive/PA Images)
He then tried to grab the driver before she drove off with her car door open.
Ms Nelson-Cofie said: “She was in shock and simply drove off at speed with her car door hanging open. But that did not stop the defendant.
“The defendant carried on following the two ladies and pursued them.”
Police managed to track both vehicles after the woman dialled 999.
A 10-minute police pursuit then took place, with Fieldhouse spotted driving at speeds reaching 75mph in 30mph zones.
The convict drove through a red light, failed to give way at a junction and headed towards oncoming traffic on the wrong side of a road during the high-speed chase.
He was finally arrested in Woodstock Road after officers deployed a stinger.
Ms Nelson-Cofie said: “Other vehicles did have to drive out of the way. The defendant did not adhere to any of the road signs
“Once the defendant decided to stop, he ran from the vehicle and swiftly was detained by police.”
Following his arrest, Fieldhouse travelled to Dubai where he committed another driving-related offence.
Ms Nelson-Cofie added: “Whilst in Dubai, he drove on a tram lane. There’s numerous correspondence that he was arrested and detained in Dubai and had to pay all sorts of penalties.”
Ilana Davis, defending, said Fieldhouse wanted to apologise for the ‘harm’ he had caused the women.
The father – who had cocaine in his system when he was driving – was suffering with depression following the breakdown of his marriage in 2020.
Ms Davis said: “He is embarrassed [about] how he behaved. He thinks at the time he was motivated by feelings of anger and poor mental health.”
Fieldhouse – who admitted dangerous driving and assault by beating – was jailed for 15 months and handed a 31-month driving ban.
Sentencing on January 18, Judge Michael Chambers QC said: “It is a very worrying case because your intention was clearly criminal.
“As to what your precise intentions were, we perhaps will never know.
“There’s no basis for indicating that the women were driving in any way that can be criticised.”
The court was told Fieldhouse was handed a four-year jail term for robbery in 2008 and went to prison for burglary in 2010.