WHILE high after sniffing glue, a man pulled an imitation gun on a milkman before stealing his vehicle and leading police on a chase round the town centre.
At Chester Crown Court Simon Walton, of Livingstone Road, Ellesmere Port, was sentenced to three years imprisonment in relation to two incidents, both carried out while under the influence of drink and solvents.
Lisa Edmonds, prosecuting, told the court how on October 5 last year Walton, 36, had approached a milkman in the course of doing his rounds in Wilkinson Street North, Ellesmere Port, and pointed an imitation firearm at the terrified victim.
Fearing for his life, the milkman ran off, but then saw Walton climb into his vehicle, which was loaded with about 400 bottles of milk, and start the engine.
A witness contacted the police who located the vehicle driving along Grace Road at speeds of up to 50mph in a 30mph zone.
Despite four police vehicles in pursuit, in a chase which lasted 17 minutes, Walton failed to stop and it was not until a 'stinger' was used on the A41 that the vehicle was finally halted.
Police officers could smell alcohol and solvents on Walton.
In another incident on August 14, again after sniffing glue, Walton assaulted security guard Ewan Worthington, who was on his way home from work at about 5.35am.
Walton was seen by his victim putting his head in a plastic bag from which he kept inhaling.
Walton then hit the guard with a sharp blow to his neck which knocked him unconscious, and when he came to he found Walton on top of him and punching him.
Walton was seen near the scene by police officers and identified himself as being the person responsible for the assault.
Philip Tully, defending, told the court how Walton, from the age of 12, had been involved in solvent abuse and using a whole host of other drugs.
He said he had shown 'genuine remorse' for his actions.
Sentencing him, Judge Stephen Clarke gave credit for Walton's early guilty pleas but added: 'I can't ignore the sheer seriousness of these matters and the protection of the public is paramount in such cases. Only a custodial sentence can be appropriate.'