A BENDIGO learner driver who was caught speeding to evade police during a "wilfully moronic episode" has lost his licence for 12 months.
Alex Harmer, 18, appeared in the Bendigo Magistrates' Court on Wednesday where he pleaded guilty to charges including speeding.
The court heard between May 26 and May 27 this year, Harmer and two co-accused were involved in a number of dangerous driving incidents around Bendigo.
Shortly after midnight on May 26, Harmer was a passenger in a blue Holden Sedan that was speeding along the Midland Highway, travelling at speeds between 135km/h and 199km/h.
The same car was also seen driving along Lyttleton Terrace, with one of Harmer's co-accused hanging out of a passenger window while holding onto a rubbish bin.
The court heard the group drove to the intersection of High Street and Thistle Street and performed several burnouts outside of the Bendigo Police Station.
The car lost traction during the burnout and narrowly avoided colliding with parked vehicles.
In the early hours of May 27, one of the co-accused was driving when the group again performed burnouts at the intersection of Myer Street and Mitchell Street.
That evening, Harmer was driving the vehicle along the McIvor Highway with the Holden's number plates covered with grey tape.
The officers activated their lights and sirens, but Harmer and the two co-accused sped off, travelling at about 85km/h along Sternberg Street.
Harmer held a learner's permit at the time of the offending.
On May 28, the two co-accused turned themselves in to the Bendigo Police Station and told police Harmer was involved.
Police contacted Harmer's mother and the 18-year-old came in for questioning later that day.
The group admitted to filming most of the offending and creating a TikTok video about their crimes.
Harmer told officers he also drove the vehicle in Epsom, travelling at speeds between 130km/h to 140km/h. He also said he drove at speeds of 190km/h in an unknown location.
Magistrate Patrick Southey said the offending was a "wilfully moronic episode", which was "quite unbelievable".
"But young men in a group do idiotic things they might not do by themselves," he said.
Mr Southey said the burnouts outside of the Bendigo Police Station were "deliberately provocative and juvenile".
"It wouldn't have been funny if you had killed someone," the magistrate said.
Defence lawyer Robert Timms told the court Harmer was cooperative with police and had made full and frank admissions.
Mr Timms said the 18-year-old had since obtained a mental health plan after being diagnosed with anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
The defence lawyer said one of Harmer's co-accused was handed a $1500 fine after last month pleading guilty to the offending.
Mr Timms asked the magistrate to consider parity for sentence.
Harmer was convicted and fined $1500. His licence was also cancelled and he was disqualified from driving for 12 months.
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