Police in Australia are being accused of using a human shield in order to stop a speeding driver.

David Rendina told ABC Melbourne he was headed south on the Hume Freeway near Epping last Saturday when he was directed by Victoria Police to stop. Rendina's girlfriend and two small children well also in the vehicle.

"I followed two other vehicles into the emergency lane," he said. "I'm the last one in line."


With both freeway lanes and the emergency lane plugged up with cars, Rendina looked back and saw something hurtling towards him. "I pretty much knew I was a sitting duck," he recalled.

Just then the speeding car plowed into Rendina's 2011 Nissan Navara Ute and several other vehicles before coming to a stop. Rendina's car was totaled.

According to Assistant Commissioner Steve Fontana, police were in pursuit of the speeding driver, but the chase was called off because the "maniac" was driving too fast. At the time of collision, the driver may have been going as fast as 150kph (~93mph).

As for the use of a human shield in his halting, Fontana said he was given a different account, but would not elaborate. "Some of these situations are very difficult to deal with," he said. "Our members are thinking on their feet and it's often very difficult for them."

If a human shield was in fact employed, it remained unclear why drivers were forced to remain inside their cars.

The 19-year-old speed demon, who was reportedly a student driver, was later revealed to be driving a stolen vehicle. He was charged with a number of crimes, including theft of a motor car and reckless conduct endangering life.

[video via VideoSift]