THE hunt for the hit-and-run killer of disabled granddad Christopher Colegate has taken a significant step forward, police say.
Officers working to track down the driver, who left the 69-year-old pedestrian for dead on a Poole street six months ago, have released details of the type of car they believe was involved – a light-coloured VW Golf Mark 4.
They’ve also issued an increased £10,000 reward in a bid to bring the killer to justice, and made public CCTV footage of Mr Colegate, captured just seconds before the fatal collision at the junction of Darby’s Lane and Heath Avenue.
Mr Colegate, from Poole, suffered multiple injuries after being struck on Friday December 13, last year.
Police were alerted by a member of the public at 7.25pm. Mr Colegate, who walked with a distinctive stoop and used a stick, died of his injuries later in Poole Hospital.
Following the latest development, Mr Colegate’s daughter Tash Motton said: “We need justice for dad because he didn’t deserve this.”
Police Sergeant Stuart Pitman gives updates on the case and Chris Colegate's daughter Tash Motton gives an interview
She’s also desperate to prevent another potential tragedy. “If they can do it once and think they’ve got away with it,” she said, “they could quite easily do this again to someone else’s family.”
CCTV of the car police are looking for travelling along Heath Avenue
Oakdale Conservative Club, where Mr Colegate was heading for when he was mowed down, has also offered an additional £1,000 for information.
Dorset Police Sergeant Stuart Pitman said: “Six months have now passed since this tragic incident that happened, two weeks before Christmas, when Mr Chris Colegate was run down by a vehicle in Heath Avenue and left for dead.
“Over the last six months the investigation team has been working tirelessly, seeking expert opinion, visiting various vehicles and persons to eliminate them from the investigation.”
‘So difficult for us all to adjust’
“IN A heartbeat, our lives changed forever.”
Those are the words of Chris Colegate’s daughter Tash Motton almost six months to the day after her father was killed by a callous hit and run driver who left him dying in the road.
She said “someone has to know” who is responsible for the death of Mr Colgate, a frail pensioner who walked using a stick.
“This driver might have told someone else what they have done,” she said.
“That means it’s a burden for someone else. I understand how hard it must be to make the decision to tell the police if it’s a loved one who has done this. But that means the second person is part of this crime too.”
Mr Colegate had been married to wife Freda for almost 48 years before his death last December.
“It’s been so difficult for all of us to adjust,” said Tash.
“He was a mad Arsenal fan, and he wasn’t there to see them win the FA Cup this year. It felt like they lifted the trophy for dad.”