The 14-year-old boy who was allegedly driving a stolen car that rammed a police car in Mosgiel on Wednesday was a fugitive in a high-speed police pursuit stopped by a near Queenstown.
He is charged with unlawfully taking a vehicle, dangerous driving, failing to stop and theft.
Police have opposed bail and senior sergeant Al Dickie, of Mosgiel, says the teen will be housed in the meantime at a youth institution in Christchurch.
A car allegedly driven by the Fairfield boy rammed a patrol car.
He then ran off, but was caught a short time later by a police dog unit.
Dickie says he has been told the boy was one of four fugitives in a car involved in a high-speed police pursuit brought to a stop by a flock of sheep in January.
It was “not really” a surprise to hear of the connection, as the boy “was known” to police in Mosgiel, Dickie said.
“We are fortunate that he didn’t get out of that cul-de-sac [during the incident]; otherwise we probably would’ve had a repeat [of the January chase].”
If the teenager had eluded police, there was a high probability it would have “ended badly”.
The joyriders only reached Timaru, not Christchurch, as police originally believed, Dickie says.
A 15-year-old Dunedin boy, who was a passenger in the car, was granted bail to a Dunedin address.
He is charged with unlawfully getting into a vehicle.
Two 13-year-old female passengers, reported missing on Tuesday, were not charged, Snr Sgt Dickie said.
The Otago Daily Times previously reported a 14-year-old boy faced three charges of theft in relation to petrol drive-offs and one of unlawfully taking a vehicle in relation to the Central Otago chase.
The chase and photos of the fugitives being arrested in front of a flock of sheep made headlines across the world.
Otago Daily Times