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JAILED: Death crash driver fled leaving dying girlfriend behind

West Bromwich | Crime | Published:

A drug-driver who left his girlfriend to die at a crash scene following a police pursuit has been jailed after a "deplorable" court outburst in which he blamed his victim.

Sarah Handley

Serial criminal Adrian Paskin, who had no licence or insurance, smashed into another car in his Ford Fiesta, pulled his hood up and ran off, leaving Sarah Handley on his rear seat with a fatal head injury.

Birmingham Crown Court heard Paskin, 35, evaded police by running red lights at up to 70mph during two high-speed chases within hours of each other on August 17 this year.

The 28-year-old victim, a mother-of-one from West Bromwich, was pronounced dead shortly after the collision in Crocketts Road, Handsworth, Birmingham.

Aliya Rashid, prosecuting, said Paskin's Fiesta was made the subject of a police marker after failing to stop in the early hours for a police patrol, which abandoned the pursuit in the Ladywood area of Birmingham.

Ms Rashid told the court: "His speeds on that occasion went up to 90mph in 30-40mph roads."

Paskin, who was wearing a mask during the first pursuit, was then spotted by police at 9.30pm on the M6 near Walsall, and was tracked to junction 1 of the M5 at West Bromwich.

Crocketts Road is a residential road leading towards Smethwick from Handsworth. Photo: Google Maps

The heroin and cocaine user, who has previous convictions for 67 offences including 10 of driving while disqualified, then drove on a pavement to try to escape from police, but crashed less than a minute after officers again called off efforts to pursue the Fiesta due to safety fears.

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Paskin, who had no lights on, was said by witnesses to be driving at around 100mph when he crashed into a Volkswagen Golf carrying a family-of-three.

After CCTV footage of the crash scene was shown in court, a family victim impact statement was read paying tribute to Miss Handley and describing her loved one's pain.

Paskin then shouted from the dock: "Your daughter didn't want me to stop the car. That's why I didn't stop."

Passing sentence, Judge Melbourne Inman QC said Paskin - who was jailed for dangerous driving in 2007 and 2015 and was four times over the drug-driving limit - had a truly appalling record of previous offending.

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The judge told Paskin: "Your behaviour in this court during the sentencing hearing, when the victim personal statements of Sarah's parents were being read out, was utterly deplorable.

"I don't punish you for that but it's clearly beyond doubt that you appear to have no remorse. Your only concern appears to be yourself and nobody else, including sadly Sarah and her family."

Paskin, who handed himself in at Oldbury police station six hours after the fatal crash, was jailed for nine years and four months.

He was also sentenced to a driving ban of 12 years and eight months.

He pleaded guilty at a previous hearing to dangerous driving, causing death by dangerous driving, having no insurance, and driving otherwise than in accordance with a licence.

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