Speeding driver left woman in street with life-changing injuries
A speeding motorist, who knocked down a pedestrian and left her lying in the street with catastrophic life changing injuries, was starting a 21-month jail sentence today.
Audi driver Liam Tabannor was travelling at 47mph in a 30mph limit for 100 metres before the impact and no less than 39mph as he ploughed into Tracy Morgan, a judge heard.
She was crossing Long Lane, Halesowen with her partner Steven Hill when disaster struck at around 8.15pm on November 23 last year, Wolverhampton Crown Court was told.
He had put his arm across her path while checking the traffic, saw none and had reached the middle of the road when he spotted the headlights of a car travelling fast towards them, said Ms Amiee Parkes, prosecuting.
Mr Hill explained: "As soon as I saw it I stopped walking but it seemed to be coming straight at me. I jumped out of the way and it skimmed past me. Tracy was a little bit behind me to the left." The next thing he knew she was lying in a heap after being thrown a significant distance.
Tabannor stopped the car, walked to the injured pedestrian before returning to the Audi and driving off but fortunately a witness made a note of its registration number.
The 27-year-old said he did not know where it was but suspected it had been stolen because he had allegedly left the key in the ignition. It has never been found. His claim of being at home when the accident happened was destroyed by analysis of his phone which showed it was in the area at the appropriate time.
Ms Morgan, who came to court in a wheelchair, suffered a bleed on the brain, a fracture to her left shoulder, and dreadful injuries to the lower part of her left leg on which she has had three serious operations and could face more amid concerns that it might have to be amputated.
The child car practitioner said she may have to deal with pain and discomfort for the rest of her life. She continued: "I used to be a happy confident person but now I feel anxious, nervous and afraid. I finally felt content and very happy with my life and then this person hits me and everything changes."
Mr David Munro, defending, maintained Tabannor bitterly regretted the way he behaved in the immediate aftermath of the incident but had been "overwhelmed" by a feeling of panic. He had "significantly" reduced his speed before the impact and was full of remorse, it was said.
Tabannor, of Parkfield Road, Oldbury, who had no previous convictions and had launched a business with supported by the Prince's Trust, admitted causing serious injury by dangerous driving. He was jailed and banned from driving for two years on release from prison by Judge Simon Ward who told him:
"No pedestrian would have expected a car to be travelling as fast as you were in an area like that and when you hit her were still travelling at considerable speed. She suffered catastrophic and life-changing injuries."
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