Clayton Williams David Phillips
Clayton Williams (left) is accused of murdering Pc Dave Phillips (right) Facebook / Merseyside Police

A teenager ran over and killed a police office in a stolen truck as he deployed a stinger device in a "cowardly and merciless act", a court has heard. Clayton Williams is accused of murdering PC Dave Phillips during a high-speed chase in Merseyside where the 19-year-old exceeded speeds of 80mph in a Mitsubishi 4x4 vehicle.

During a hearing on 8 March at the Manchester Crown Court a jury heard how PC Phillips was given "no chance" before he was knocked flying into the air in Wallasey, on 5 October 2015. Williams, who was then aged 18, claims that he did not intend to injure or kill the officer and denies the charge of murder.

Prosecutor Ian Unsworth QC said Williams, of Wallasey, and another man, Philip Stuart, 30, of Prenton, Wirral, had burgled a shop in Birkenhead on the night of the incident, stealing the keys to the Mitsubishi. The 4x4 was later spotted by an unmarked police car which chased the vehicle.

A marked patrol car joined the pursuit and the crown says that Williams drove at "vastly excessive speeds" along narrow residential roads. He is also accused of driving through red lights, on the wrong side of the road and hitting a parked car.

Unsworth told the court according to the Mirror: "All this was done in a determined and ruthless attempt to avoid being apprehended. Those same ruthless qualities came to the fore when he approached the police officer who would be killed.

"The officer, Police Constable David Phillips, was doing no more than placing a special device known as a Stop Stick across the road. He was simply trying to bring the stolen vehicle to a controlled stop.

"If the defendant had driven over the device, the Stop Stick would then have acted to puncture the tyres and slow the vehicle down."

But instead of driving over the device, Williams drove off the road and into PC Phillips, the jury heard. Unsworth added: "The officer was ... clearly visible, and, we suggest, had been for some distance beforehand. As events unfolded he stood little or no chance.

"Once the truck was a very short distance from the officer, the defendant turned it sharply to the left. It was, you may think, a cowardly and merciless act. PC Phillips' fate was sealed."

The Merseyside Police officer suffered "catastrophic" injuries, and was pronounced dead at the scene. Williams also denies a second count of attempted grievous bodily harm as prosecutors say he drove into the direction of a second officer, Pc Thomas Birkett, who had to jump out of the way. Williams has admitted the burglary of the Mitsubishi and aggravated vehicle taking.