THE FATHER of an infant boy who dodged police and crashed his van during a dangerous pursuit has been jailed.

Clayton Wheeler was nearly twice over the drink-driving limit when he was spotted driving erratically on Langley Hill and Park Lane in Tilehurst on November 11.

The 25-year-old was driving at 60mph in a 30mph area and he continued to evade the officers even after two of the tyres on his vehicle had burst.

Wheeler told a jury he was not the one driving the van, but he was convicted following a trial.

Lauren Sales, mitigating, said: "He is extremely frightened at the prospect of going to jail.

"He provides for his partner Kayleigh and their son, who was born on July 4.

"People speak very highly of him and he has been fortunate to hold onto his employment.

"He has been under immense stress and he wants to continue working, while serving some sort of punishment."

During the late-night chase, Clayton was on the wrong side of the road and he crashed into the central reservation after being followed on Hildens Drive and Firs Road.

His partner, two brothers, mother and father all attended the sentencing at Reading Crown Court on Tuesday, August 8.

Judge Maria Lamb concluded: "It is only by good chance that someone was not seriously injured by your driving.

"You then maintained this charade that you were not the one driving the van that night.

"The court cannot ignore what has happened. This was thoroughly dangerous driving and it could have ended in catastrophe.

"I understand this will be difficult for your family, who have all described you as a loving and hard-working man.

"However, the misery you have brought upon your family is your own fault."

Clayton Wheeler, formerly of Helmsdale Close, Reading, was sentenced to eight months for dangerous driving and three months for drink driving to be served consecutively, with half of his sentence on licence.

He was ordered to pay compensation of £100 and was disqualified from driving for two years and five months.