A LEARNER driver charged with stealing a car and leading police on a high-speed chase appeared in court on eight charges today.

Hemi Thompson, of Kirkwood Rd, Tweed Heads South, pleaded guilty to police pursuit, driving recklessly/furiously and one charge of driving unaccompanied by a licensed driver.

Appearing via video link from jail, the 19-year-old also pleaded not guilty to stealing and driving a motor vehicle, exceeding speeds of 45km/h and two charges of driving unaccompanied by a licensed driver.

Thompson was charged with stealing a Subaru station wagon from Byron Bay on March 27. Last Wednesday April 6 police allegedly spotted the stolen vehicle on the Pacific Highway and engaged in a number of short pursuits.

The chase ended when the Subaru crashed into a concrete wall on the off-ramp near Tugun.

Thompson was also before the court on an assault charge, for which he did not enter a plea.

His case was adjourned for further mention until May 2.