Families left devastated by road deaths back calls for tougher sentences handed to drivers who kill

Bournemouth Echo: TRAGIC: Ben Andrews’ father Paul and his daughter Molly, holding a favourite photograph of Ben TRAGIC: Ben Andrews’ father Paul and his daughter Molly, holding a favourite photograph of Ben

TWO families left devastated by road tragedies have backed calls for tougher sentences to be given to drivers who kill.

Research says 82 per cent of the public believe there should be longer jail terms for drivers who cause death.

Jade Clark of Ringwood was killed at the age of 16 as she rode her motor scooter on the A31 near the Ashley Heath roundabout in February 2013.

Brian Hampton, the driver of the car involved, was sentenced to six years in jail for perverting the course of justice, causing death by careless driving, driving whilst disqualified and driving while uninsured.

Jade’s nan, Linda Pidgley, said: “He wasn’t supposed to be on the road. He had no insurance. “He got four years for perverting the course of justice. He got more for that than he did for causing a death.”

She said the pain of Jade’s loss was always with the family.

“It’s never going to go away. They say time heals but I feel the same pain now as I did when it happened,” she added.

Ben Andrews was 19 when he was killed on the A354 near Blandford in May 2012. The driver of the other car, soldier Benjamin James Southall, was jailed for 32 months for causing death by careless driving while under the influence of alcohol.

He is expected to be freed from jail at around the second anniversary of Ben Andrews’ death.

Ben’s dad Paul said: “I think the sentences should be longer. I don’t think there’s a deterrent to stop anyone.”

He said matters were made worse for bereaved families because killer drivers kept their licences until convicted. Driving bans begin when the offender was sent to prison rather than after they are released.

“As an HGV driver, if I’m caught doing an offence, they can take my licence on the spot until it goes to court or a traffic commissioner.

“Why can’t they do it for drink or drug-drivers?” said Mr Andrews.

A survey by road safety charity Brake and insurance company Direct Line also found that 81 per cent of drivers believed taking an illegal risk at the wheel should be considered ‘dangerous’, not ‘careless’, driving.

Eighty-five per cent said drivers who killed while drink or drug-driving should get five or more years in prison, while 66 per cent supported such sentences for those who caused a death through speeding.

Comments (3)

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1:19pm Thu 27 Mar 14

rayc says...

What is the point of longer sentences when the ones given out now are rarely the maximum anyway? Brain Hampton was already disqualified when he killed Jade Clarke but was only convicted of Death By Careless Driving. I would suggest that most drivers would consider his actions met the criteria for Death by Dangerous Driving. Brain Hampton got twice the sentence for Attempting to Pervert the Course of Justice than he did for the other offences.
What is the point of longer sentences when the ones given out now are rarely the maximum anyway? Brain Hampton was already disqualified when he killed Jade Clarke but was only convicted of Death By Careless Driving. I would suggest that most drivers would consider his actions met the criteria for Death by Dangerous Driving. Brain Hampton got twice the sentence for Attempting to Pervert the Course of Justice than he did for the other offences. rayc
  • Score: 5

2:55pm Thu 27 Mar 14

skydriver says...

rayc wrote:
What is the point of longer sentences when the ones given out now are rarely the maximum anyway? Brain Hampton was already disqualified when he killed Jade Clarke but was only convicted of Death By Careless Driving. I would suggest that most drivers would consider his actions met the criteria for Death by Dangerous Driving. Brain Hampton got twice the sentence for Attempting to Pervert the Course of Justice than he did for the other offences.
Quite right , a life sentence would be the only right thing for this sort of Crime!
[quote][p][bold]rayc[/bold] wrote: What is the point of longer sentences when the ones given out now are rarely the maximum anyway? Brain Hampton was already disqualified when he killed Jade Clarke but was only convicted of Death By Careless Driving. I would suggest that most drivers would consider his actions met the criteria for Death by Dangerous Driving. Brain Hampton got twice the sentence for Attempting to Pervert the Course of Justice than he did for the other offences.[/p][/quote]Quite right , a life sentence would be the only right thing for this sort of Crime! skydriver
  • Score: 5

4:39pm Thu 27 Mar 14

suzigirl says...

Don't forget the idiots that are involved in an accident and then leave the scene - they should be given at least a couple of years!
Don't forget the idiots that are involved in an accident and then leave the scene - they should be given at least a couple of years! suzigirl
  • Score: 2

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