Dad’s crazy decision to perch baby on front of illegal bike and go on rampage

A dad has been jailed after making the crazy decision to perch his 16-month old daughter on the front of his illegal off-road motorbike before embarking on a rampageous ride across a notorious city junction.

James Giles, of Hull, who had previously admitted to dangerous driving and exposing a child under two to harm or danger, broke down in tears after being sentenced on Tuesday (January 17).

The 24-year old said he couldn't offer an explanation for his actions, Hull Live reports.

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Neither Giles nor the toddler were wearing helmets as they weaved in and out of traffic and passed through a red light, whilst CCTV footage showed the tot with a dummy in her mouth as she sat precariously on the bike's petrol tank throughout.

After completing a five-mile journey Giles dropped his daughter off and went on a second rampage alone – again passing through red lights as well as undertaking other vehicles, attempting a wheelie and narrowly avoiding smashing into another motorcyclist. 

Stephen Robinson, prosecuting, told Hull Crown Court: "The defendant was riding his unregistered bike on May 8 last year along Holderness Road and Mount Pleasant.

"He was not wearing a helmet and he had his daughter who was 16 months old at the time who was sitting in front of him on the petrol tank. She was not wearing a restraint or a helmet."

Mr Robinson continued: "The defendant undertook vehicles and veered a lot. He went through a red traffic light and took his hands off the handlebars at least once.

"He attempted to do a wheelie and was speeding. He nearly crashed into a motorcycle after going through a red light."

The CCTV footage of Giles' actions, which had been captioned by a motorist's dashcam and gone viral on social media was played in court. 

A witness statement, read out by Mr Robinson said: "I saw the man riding with a child, who must have been no older than two with a dummy in her mouth. I was very angry by what I had seen. I posted the video on social media and I reported it to police a couple of days later."

Giles, who had no previous convictions, soon became aware that footage was circulating and duly handed himself in before pleading guilty at the earliest opportunity.

Benjamin Donnell, mitigating, told the court Giles suffered from mental health issues and had submitted glowing character references from his mum, step dad and a family friend.

Mr Donnell said: "My client accepts what he did that day was wholly unacceptable and grossly negligent. He knows there was no justification for what he did. While this was deliberate conduct what he did was not designed to harm his child.

"When he was young his dad died in Afghanistan at the hands of the Taliban. This has had a profound effect on his life. He suffers from depression and attention deficit disorder.

"But the way he dealt with that was unwise. He was using cannabis and stopped taking his prescribed medication. This made him more impulsive.

“Since the incident, he has cleaned up his act and now has a permanent role with a timber company which he really enjoys. There is no excuse for what he did but he is addressing his issues.

"We have a young man who has done something very wrong but he is remorseful and taking steps to address his difficulties."

Despite accepting the mitigation, Judge Kate Rayfield told Giles prison was unavoidable due to the serious nature of the offence.

She said: "You made a decision to put your 16-month-old child on the front of your off-road bike on a busy road with no helmet for either of you. It is hard to fathom what you were thinking when you put her on the bike.

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"You then went on to ride the motorbike in a dangerous way and I have watched the footage as you weaved through traffic, went through a red light and undertook vehicles.

"It must have been obvious to you that you could have killed your daughter and you exposed her to such a dangerous risk. She was too young to understand the risks and, as her father, you had a duty to keep her safe which you did not.

"I have read the character references and I accept you have had a challenging life, but you must have realised what you were doing.

"I believe it to be the most serious kind of dangerous driving with a flagrant disregard of the dangers of the road. There is no justification for exposing your child to such dangers the way you did. I believe the public expects me to impose an appropriate sentence."

Giles then collapsed in tears as Judge Rayfield jailed him for 16 months and banned him from driving for two years and eight months.


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