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Jade Clark death crash driver Brian Hampton jailed for six years
Updated 6:57pm Wednesday 18th September 2013 in News
This live event has finished
- Brian Hampton is on trial for perverting the course of justice in the crash which claimed the life of Ringwood teenager Jade Clark.
- The 58-year-old denies the charge which dates between February 24 and March 22 this year.
- He has previously pleaded guilty to death by careless driving, driving a Volvo XC90 on two occasions whilst disqualified and driving without insurance.
- Jade, 16, died from head injuries when she was knocked off her scooter on the A31 between the Verwood slip road and the Ashley Heath roundabout on February 24.
- The trial is being held at Bournemouth Crown Court and is due to last between four and five days.
- Simon Jones prosecutes and Pierce Wauchope represents Hampton.
We're closing our blog but you will still be able to comment below. You can find more stories in our special Jade Clark section
Video footage of Jade's mum Sharon Clark speaking to the media a little earlier on after Brian Hampton was sentenced:
You can find more coverage from the trial and all our background here:
- Dorset Police: search for driver in Jade Clark death crash was largest ever inquiry
- UPDATED WITH VIDEO: I'll never forgive him: mum's anguish as Brian Hampton is jailed for six years over Jade Clark death crash
- Family of Jade Clark: we've been warmed by "overwhelming" support from the public
- Brian Hampton "totally heartless" for fleeing crash scene, says Jade Clark's dad
- Jade Clark death crash: police examined more than 1,500 Volvo XC90s to find hit-and-run driver
- UPDATED WITH VIDEO: "She was my friend as well as my daughter" - mum speaks of devastation at losing Jade
- Jade Clark death crash: "I wasn’t aware there was an accident”, says driver Brian Hampton
- Jade Clark death crash driver Brian Hampton jailed for six years
- Jade Clark death crash: "I did not hit that poor girl on the scooter”, accused wrote in letter to wife
- Jade Clark death crash: police tell jury findings from investigation of the crash scene
We've had the following statement through from the Crown Prosecution Service:
Simon Jones, Senior Crown Advocate for the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) in Wessex said: “Brian Hampton knew very well that he had, at the very least, been involved in a serious road traffic collision and that it was his duty to stop. Whilst he was driving on the A31 road, on Sunday 24th February 2013, his car struck a moped that was ridden by a 16-year-old girl, Jade Clark. As a result, Miss Clark fell into the third lane of the carriageway. Brian Hampton drove around her, leaving her exposed to the fast moving traffic from behind. The driver of a VW transporter mini bus was unable to avoid the collision, having no time to react. He drove over what he initially believed to be debris but the impact caused catastrophic head injuries to Jade and her instant death. Her moped was fragmented into hundreds of pieces.
“It was the prosecution case that Brian Hampton sought to evade justice and it was the prosecution case that he specifically perverted the course of public justice by arranging for the damage to his own vehicle to subsequently be repaired. He did this with only one purpose in mind, that being to ensure there could be no link between him, his vehicle and the collision that occurred on the A31 that day.
The issue in this case was not with whether the defendant caused Miss Clark’s death through careless driving as he pleaded guilty to this offence at an earlier stage in the proceedings
Brian Hampton was a disqualified driver who drove without insurance at the time of the collision and caused a death by careless driving. Although he pleaded guilty to these offences, it was important to bring him before the court for perverting the course of public justice.
Today, the jury at Bournemouth Crown Court found him guilty of that offence and we hope that with this verdict will bring some kind of comforts to Jade’s parents and family.
“Our thoughts are with them at this time.”
See tomorrow's Daily Echo and online for the full story.
Jade's mum Sharon has just read a statement outside court:
"As a family, we are delighted with today's verdict.
"On that terrible day back in February, our beautiful Jade was riding her scooter on a route she had done many times before, when she had the misfortune of being on the same stretch of road as Brian Hampton, who had been driving for months as a disqualified driver.
“We now know that Brian Hampton’s car did not kill Jade. What we do know is that he did knock her off her scooter and he left her on the road, at the mercy of other traffic.
“He could have stopped and tried to protect her; he could have gone to her aid and possibly saved her but he selfishly chose to protect himself and drove around her. We can never forgive him for that.
“It’s clear that he has then done everything possible to cover-up what he did. He lied to his work; lied to mechanics and even lied to his wife. Today, the jury have seen through his lies and found him guilty.
“Brian Hampton has never once admitted knocking Jade off her scooter; never apologised for what he has done and never shown any remorse.
“No sentence get gets will never bring Jade back. One day, he will be able to continue with his life. Ours will be a life-sentence – spending the rest of our lives without Jade.”
Hampton is also handed four months jail for two counts of disqualified driving. No sep penalty for two counts of driving with no insurance. This is concurrent.
He is banned from driving for seven years
Judge Wiggs extends his thanks to the police for their efforts throughout the investigation.
Brian Hampton jailed for a total of six years.
For perverting the course of justice - four years.
For the charge of death by careless driving - two years in prison.
Many will think they are inadequate but I have to follow the guidance of the court of appeal and guidelines.
Judge will pass consecutive sentences.
You have shown yourself to be a consistant liar.
Judge Wiggs: You killed a young girl who was driving her moped.
You were very fortunate not to be charged with causing death by careless driving. It could be argued that your driving fell far below the standards of a competent and careful driver.
This is a bad case of causing death by careless driving.
The jury have come back to hear Hampton being sentenced.
The public gallery is full. As is the press bench.
The judge is coming back to court to sentence Hampton.
Judge Wiggs has retired to consider sentence.
Hampton says he is absolutely devastated by what he did. Not only for causing Jade's death but for the impact on her family.
Hampton is frightened by the very obvious deteriorating in his health.
Hampton's barrister Pierce Wauchope is now addressing the judge.
He says Hampton is a former paramedic.
For the last 30 years he has been working in the health and safety field.
His first wife died.
His marriage with his current wife Maureen Hampton appears to be now over.
Judge Wiggs said he saw the aftermath coming to work the morning after the crash.
The prosecution and defence are now addressing the judge about sentencing.
Judge Wiggs says Brian Hampton was "very lucky" not to have been charged with causing death by dangerous driving.
He said the fact he hit a well-lit scooter on a clear stretch of road indicates his driving fell well below the expected standards.
Sharon said people will no doubt imagine the number of times she has thought whether she should have bought the scooter for Jade. “In my bad times I blame myself. When I think about it I know Jade did and would thank me for getting it for her. It really did give her independence.”
"I wake in the night imagining her lying in the road crying out for her mum. It is almost unbearable and I hope she didn't suffer.
“No punishment will be suitable and none will bring Jade back.”
A victim impact statement is now being read to court. It is from Jade's mum Sharon Clark.
Simon Jones say it is an aggravating feature that Hampton was driving whilst disqualified and without insurance.
He had also been convicted for drink driving previously.
The jury were deliberating for around 46 minutes before returning their verdict.
Hampton will be sentenced for - perverting the course of justice, causing death by careless driving, 2x driving whilst disqualified and 2x driving with no insurance.
Judge Samuel Wiggs say he will now pass sentence.
Emotions are running high with Jade's parents and family.
Cheers from the family in the public gallery.
Jade Clark crash death driver Brian Hampton has been found guilty of perverting the course of justice.
I believe the jury have reached a verdict.
We have all been called back into court.
The jury have now retired to consider their verdict.
We are all back in court. Judge Samuel Wiggs is now summing up the case.
The court has broken for lunch. Back at 2pm.
There is a short break and then closing speeches will begin.
Brian Hampton has now finished giving evidence.
Mr Jones is now talking about the letter he sent to his wife about his driving ban.
In it he wrote: "I swear with all my heart I did not hit that girl on her scooter."
Q: You are not genuinely remorseful about that girl?
Q: You are a liar aren't you?
"No I am not."
Mr Jones is putting it to Hampton that his lies and repairs to the car were his bid to pervert the course of justice.
He replied: "If I wanted to pervert the course of justice I would have done it the next day not three days later."
Hampton said he avoided the main roads so he could stop in lay-bys.
Q: Did you avoid the main roads on your return home?
Q: Did you avoid the A31?
"I don't think so."
Q: Did you drive past the scene Mr Hampton?
Q: Are you sure you didn't know?
Q: You drove past the scene of the collision you knew full well you were involved in?
Q: You would have known you were involved in something very serious.
Q: Did you hear anything?
"I felt a jolt."
Q: Why did you put your full beam on?
Q: It was to see what you'd done wasn't it?
Q: You drove off didn't you? You drove off because you are coward?
Q: You are a banned driver and you knew the seriousness of what you'd just done?
Q: Your carelessness caused the death of Jade Clark.
"It did but I didn't know about it."
Hampton denies stopping at the scene
Hampton is now being asked about the accident.
Q: You didn't phone the police because you were a banned driver and it was far, far serious than anything you had been invovled in before?
"I didn't know there was an accident."
Q: You knew you were at the very least invovled in a serious, serious, serious road traffic collision weren't you Mr Hampton?
Q: Did you expect the police to go the Premier Inn?
Q: You were caught out weren't you?
Hampton denies hoping the repairs to his car were so good his vehicle would not be linked to the accident.
Q: You have shown not one bit of remorse have you Mr Hampton?
"Aboslutely sir. Every day."
Q: There is not a thought for Jade Clark or her family is there?
"Every day sir."
Q: It's all about Brian Hampton isn it?
Mr Hampton says he was "confused" not lying.
Q: Mr Hampton you are a liar aren't you?
Q: You can't tell the truth in this case at all can you?
Hampton admits telling lies to police about buying dinner and sleeping in his car the night after the accident.
Q: You believe you had gone over a pothole and this what you told the police.
Q: I suggest not one occasion do you say you went or you believe you went over a pot hole. It's another lie isn't it?
Q: I suggest there is no reason for the police not to have taken this down accurately.
Q: You don't know the truth do you Mr Hampton?
Hampton denies saying to police at the station: "I did see an accident but I certainly wasn't involved in one."
Moving onto his arrest, Mr Jones said:
Q: You had been trying to get away with this since the moment it happened.
Hampton replied: "No sir, not at all."
Hampton agrees giving the Holiday Inn in Kent a bogus address.
Q: You are compulsive liar aren't you?
Q: Mr Hampton you knew you hadn't hit a rock didn't you?
Q: You are telling lies to this jury aren't you?
Hampton says he first saw the damage when he arrived at the Premier Inn in Poole.
"I did lie to my wife about the car."
Hampton agrees he told his wife lies from the Premier Inn on the phone.
Q: You are a liar aren't you?
Hampton agrees he was disqulafied from driving on Thursday June 29, 2012.
Q: You never told her that day or after that day. It was an ongoing lie."
Q: Do you accept that was utterly deceitful.
Mr Jones is now asking Hampton about the "series of lies he" told.
Hampton tells police he doesn't know where the remaining parts of his grill went to. He denies driving up the road and discarding it.
Q: You have told this jury you could have hidden your Volvo at home. Why would you drive your Jaguar if you were a banned driver?
"I said I could have done if I wanted to hide the Volvo."
Q: You had access to four cars at home so there was no need to get your Volvo repaired. "No sir."
Hampton will now be cross examined by Simon Jones, prosecuting.
Hampton said he was worried that if he told police he was going to work that day he would get the sack because he was driving whilst disqualified. He said he was going to see his daughter in Poole. "I lied".
He said he was advised to say 'no comment' in his interviews because he was tired.
Hampton said he was told about the accident involving Jade Clark by police on his arrest. He then found out it had featured on Crimewatch.
Talking about his home in Kent, Mr Hampton says he could have cleared out the garage and driven his vehilce through the garage into his back garden to hide his vehicle.
"I could have covered it over for a year if I wanted to and driven the Jaguar, the qashqai or Nissan.
"I didn't try and hide it. I didn't know about the accident until I was arrested."
Hampton says he was in and out of hospital after getting back from Poole and before his arrest on June 21.
Hampton said he then went home to bed.
Hampton is now being asked about a conversation about a deer being hit.
"It was a gentleman there who said 'oh have you hit a deer'. I stupidly took it on."
"I told the man I didn't know how it had happened. I couldn't claim third party because I didn't have anyone to claim against. I just said I'd hit a deer. I didn't want the wife to know it was in a local garage and go and look at it which she would do."
He said he lied about waiting for the RSPCA to "make the story convincing to Mr Gilbert".
Q: There is a suggestion you went there to frustrate the investigation.
"No sir. I had no rush to get it repaired. If I was trying to hide I could have taken it straight to the garage the next day. I wasn't aware there was an accident."
Why not go straight home when you were feeling so ill? Why go to MC Motors?
"It was literally about seven minutes from home.
I knew I would be going straight back to hospital."
Hampton said: "As far as I knew sir it was just the grill that was damaged."
Hampton - said he did not inspect his car from leaving Holes Bay in Poole to arriving in Kent.
The coolant sign stayed on in the car for the entire journey.
Hampton said it took him nine hours to get home from Poole to Kent. He chose roads with lots of lay-bys so he could rest is feet if needed.
Hampton said before returning home he went to MC Motors.
Hampton said he stayed at the hotel on Monday night and Tuesday night and returned home on the Wednesday.
"I went straight to bed to ellevate my feet again.
"She saw how bad my legs were and a told her about the pain in my chest."
Asked why he booked into a hotel near home that night, Hampton said: "I honestly didn't want to face the wife.
"The hotel is literally about 3/4 miles from the hospital. I just wanted to leave it to the next morning. I knew my wife would have gone to work the next morning.
"As it turns out she had to take me to hospital later that day."
Hampton said he looked at his vehicle and tried to open his bonnet.
"There was no grill. I wanted to open my bonnet to top up the coolant level. I couldn't get it open."
He said he was intending on driving back to Kent.
He drove back and booked into a hotel at 11.58pm.
Hampton said he left the hotel at 2.30pm because he eventually fell asleep about 6/7am, woke to call his wife and then fell asleep again.
Hampton says he spoke to his wife around a couple of times the following day.
"I told her that I had trouble with the vehicle. It had broken down. I didn't know if it was the engine or not and it might have to be recovered back to Ashford in Kent."
Q: You told several, if not many lies in this case. That email to work was the first?
Q: You phoned your wife?
"Yes. The following morning.
Q: You lied to your wife?
"Yes. It was very stupid. I know now it was very stupid. I was so scared of breaking my wife. I lied to stop another row."
Hampton said he heard whistling going through the car as he made his way to the Premier Inn on Holes Bay.
He said he thought he'd hit a rock or something.
Hampton says his younger sister died in a road accident 30 years ago.
"My parents never had any closure on it, we never found out who it was. Basically it was the right thing to plead guilty.
"Until the day they died they never had any closure on it.
"I didn't want Mr and Mrs Clark to go through that."
"Right up to the day of June 21 I was adamant and still believed I didn't hit anybody or anything.
"When my solicitor showed me the evidence which proved my vehicle was invovled in the collision. It was the only honest and right thing to do, to plead guilty to it."
"I saw hazard lights in my rear view mirror.
"As I moved out to the third / fourth lane I said I saw something happening as I was going past and overtaking. But I didn't know what it was and didn't until the police officer told me."
"I know it's been said I stopped but I didn't stop at any time."
Speaking about the accident, which is said to happen at around 8pm on Sunday February 24 this year, Hampton said:
"The traffic was slow, 40/45/50 coming past Ringwood.
"It was dark, a little bit drizzly."
Q: What is your memory?
"I had gone past the Ringwood turn off and the traffic started slowing down. Suddenly all the lights were on.
"I was in lane three. I looked into my overtaking mirror to see if exit clear to pull out.
"It was clear so I indicated. I started to move out. I felt a jolt I genuinely believe it was a manhole or similar."
Q: Did you see the scooter?
"No sir not at any time."
Q: Did you see the scooter afterwards?
Speaking about how he was feeling when he travelled to Poole.
Hampton said: "I was really poorly, my legs were really swollen. I was getting pains in my chest. I knew I had to go back to hospital and I knew it was the only chance of getting to Dorset."
Turning to the events of February 24 Hampton says he travelled down to Poole on the Sunday.
Q: Why didn't you take the train?
"It was so diificult to do any walking and I very stupidly took a chance on not getting caught."
Hampton tells the court he bought a new car when he was disqualified. "I got it ready for when I returned to work, got fitter and regained my licence."
Talking about not telling his wife about being disqualified from driving, Hampton said: "No and I told the police I lied. I was so scared of breaking up my wife, I stupidly never told her."
He told his wife about the first accident and the second accident.
"She started getting really angry then. When I had the third one, it was a big damage to our marriage. She didn't believe it."
He tells court his marriage was really on the rocks. "She has had a lot to put up with my illnesses."
Hampton says he has had three accidents in the last few years.
He says he had been off work for seven months prior to the accident and was just about to go back to work.
He says he was too ill to go back to work the day of the accident but was scared that he would lose his job. "I forced myself to go."
Hampton tells court about the state of his health. He says he has brought a list from the hospital.
He says he is 58 years old. He says his health has been going down hill for the last two and a half years.
Says he has heart disease couple with diabetes
A bug from Africa has destroyed my insides basically.
Hampton is being asked questions by his barrister.
"I am a health and safety consultant in the railway industry. Making sure everyone is working safe, investigating incidents etc."
Married for over 25 years and has two grown up children.
Pierce Wauchope calls Brian Hampton to the witness box.
Brian Hampton is due to give evidence this morning.
We are expecting the case to begin shortly.
Paula Roberts reporting from court this morning.
Morning all. Paula Roberts will be reporting on day three of the Brian Hampton trial very shortly.
Here's coverage from the trial so far:
- "I did not hit that poor girl on the scooter”, accused wrote in letter to wife
- police tell jury findings from investigation of the crash scene
- Day two of the Brian Hampton trial
- Driver Brian Hampton 'attempted to evade justice', court hears
- Day one of the Brian Hampton trial
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