Concentration lapse had tragic ending for woman walking her dog

By Liam Keen | Stafford | Crime | Published:

A pensioner has been disqualified from driving and ordered to serve a community order after knocking down and killing a dementia patient.

Florence Hart has been disqualified for 15 months

Florence Hart had a “momentary lapse of concentration” when she was reversing out of her driveway in Audmore Road, Gnosall, Staffordshire, on January 26, Cannock Magistrates’ Court heard.

The 81-year-old struck Janet Eden, also in her 80s, who was walking her dog along the path at about 11.30am.

Mrs Eden suffered “catastrophic injuries” when she was caught under the red Hyundai and was pronounced dead “a few hours later” at Royal Stoke Hospital.

District Judge Kevin Grego said: “This is one of those classic offences of a momentary lapse of concentration that most people driving a car have experienced.

"In 999 out of a thousand times nothing happens, but in this case it has tragic consequences for Janet Eden.


“It’s also had a profound effect on Mrs Hart. There’s nothing to suggest that Mrs Hart’s movement of her vehicle was excessive or abrupt.

“She just did not see the pedestrian as she was behind the vehicle.


“Mrs Eden was caught under the car and suffered catastrophic injuries before she was pronounced dead a few hours later at Royal Stoke Hospital.”

Hart previously pleaded guilty to causing death by careless and inconsiderate driving on August 22.

On September 3, at Cannock Magistrates’ Court she was sentenced to a six-month community order, which includes five rehabilitation activity requirement days, disqualified from driving for 15 months and will be under curfew from 8pm to 6am for the next 28 days.

She also has to pay £270 in prosecution and surcharge costs.

District Judge Grego added: “This lady has no previous convictions and cooperated at the scene.

“She has expressed sincere and real remorse, has taken herself off the road, and pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity. She has been victim-focused rather than on her own misfortune, which includes securing Mrs Eden’s dog.”

Liam Keen

By Liam Keen
Sports Reporter - @LiamKeen_Star

Sports journalist at the Express & Star, primarily covering Walsall FC and grassroots sport across the Black Country and Staffordshire. Got a story? Get in touch on 01902 319456.

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