A teenager stole his friend’s car and crashed it - after helping him change a headlight bulb on the vehicle.

The Volkswagen Golf was later seen speeding through Huddersfield town centre before smashing into some railings and ending up on its side.

Murtaza Hussain, who only recently passed his driving test, said he didn’t think his friend would mind if he took it for a quick spin.

The 19-year-old admitted to Kirklees magistrates that his actions were foolish and he could have seriously hurt someone.

He pleaded guilty to charges of aggravated vehicle taking and using a vehicle without insurance.

Murtaza Hussain at Kirklees Magistrates' Court

Prosecutor Lisa Evans told the court that the vehicle was taken from outside Huddersfield Taxis in Wakefield Road, where Hussain’s friend works.

On January 30 Hussain was helping him change a headlight bulb on the car in the rear car park when his friend went inside the taxi office to answer the phone.

The friend told Hussain to put the screwdriver back into the car but 10 minutes later he noticed that it had been taken.

Shortly after 2am witnesses walking along Kirkgate in Huddersfield town centre saw the same car driving past at speed towards Lord Street.

Mrs Evans said: “They heard a loud bang and ran towards it thinking there had been a crash.

Kirklees Magistrates Court, Huddersfield.
Kirklees Magistrates Court, Huddersfield.

“There they saw the same vehicle on its side facing towards the pavement and the driver climbing out of the passenger door vehicle talking on his phone.

“The car had collided with some metal railings and members of the public tried to pull the car back onto its wheels but it remained on its side, heavily damaged.

Hussain, of Yew Street in Fartown, remained at the scene and was arrested.

In interview he admitted that he didn’t have permission to take the car.

He claimed he originally meant to just sit in the driver’s seat before driving off in it.

Hussain, who like his friend works as a controller for a taxi company, said he didn’t think his friend would mind if he took the car for a quick drive but it wasn’t until afterwards that he realised the consequences of his actions.

He told magistrates: “I’m sorry for what I’ve done and causing difficulties - I do feel bad and ashamed.

“I know I’ve damaged equipment put in the town centre for the safety of pedestrians and it would have been a lot worse if somebody had been there.”

Magistrates sentenced Hussain, who had no previous convictions, to a 12-month community order.

This includes 60 hours of unpaid work and 24 hours of activities at a senior attendance centre.

He was banned from driving for a year and will have to pay £85 costs and £85 victim surcharge.