A Croydon man who drove off with an officer hanging out of his car has avoided jail.

Croydon Crown Court heard how at about 10.55pm on August 17, 2018 at Hawthorn Avenue in Thornton Heath, officers stopped 23-year-old Jamie Williams who was driving a dark grey Mercedes car.

Police had seen him drive "at speed" out of a tight junction without slowing and without due care and had stopped him to speak about the manner of his driving.

Williams left the car, but as he was being questioned he got back in the car to drive off.

One of the officers involved in stopping Williams tried to prevent him making off and reached into the car through the open window. However Williams drove off with the officer hanging half out the window of the car.

After about 100 meters Williams reversed his car and struck and damaged one of the police cars involved in the incident.

The driver then began to drive off again at speed, despite the attempts of other officers to stop him and with the officer, who was then aged 26, still hanging out of the car.

After about another 100 meters the officer being dragged decided he had no choice but to eject himself from the vehicle while it was moving at speed.

The officer was taken to hospital and treated for a number of severe grazes and a fractured left wrist.

The officer has now returned to full duties, but he is still suffering from the effects of the wrist injury.

Williams was sought by police and handed himself in three days later at Croydon Police Station, where he was arrested and charged.

On September 4 Williams, of Mitcham Road, was sentenced to 18 months’ imprisonment wholly suspended for 18 months for ABH assault, criminal damage and dangerous driving, having been found guilty in July.

He is to abide by a curfew between the hours of 9am-6am for six months and is to complete 150 hours of community service within the next 12 months.

A compensation order has been made for £3,500 to be paid to the officer in the next 12 months and he has also been disqualified from driving for two years. He must also take an extended driving exam before he can drive again.