'An old lady is in her grave due to your impatience': Driver jailed over death crash
A driver whose bid to 'jump the lights' cost the life of a much-loved 88-year-old was starting a 12-month jail term today.
Tragedy struck after Jamie Platt 'booted it' in his VW Golf as the traffic signals changed to his advantage, a judge heard.
Mrs Mavis Storey - blind in one eye - was seven metres into the carriageway as the 27-year-old cut the corner going onto the wrong side of the road where she was walking, Wolverhampton Crown Court was told.
He knew the lights changed two seconds ahead of those of the opposing traffic, offering him a chance to turn right across it into Bloxwich Road, Walsall, at the busy junction with Leamore Lane where four routes converge, explained Mr Robert Price, prosecuting.
Mr Price continued: "The defendant elected to beat the traffic and was in something of a hurry as he turned at the cross roads, cutting the corner by driving on the wrong side of the road and failed to see the pedestrian. He did not break, swerve or steer away from her.
"If he had been on the right side of the road he may not have hit her. His decision to cut the corner was flawed."
An eye witness said the defendant 'booted it' away from the lights and moments later the Golf was doing 21mph as it struck Mrs Storey, who lived near the scene and had stepped into the road when the pedestrian light shone red, the court heard.
Mr Price pointed out: "She was crossing by the time the defendant set off and would not have been looking for traffic coming from that direction."
The victim suffered catastrophic injuries and died in hospital 11 hours after the incident which happened on August 13 2016.
Mr Richard Dawson, defending, said Platt, who stopped at the scene, had not expected to find a pedestrian crossing against a red light but accepted it was a mistake to cut the corner.
The defendant from Halford Crescent, Coalpool admitted causing death by careless driving and was sent to prison by Judge Michael Challinor who told him: "If you hadn't been in such a hurry you may have seen Mrs Storey and this could have been avoided.
"A much-loved, vibrant old lady is in her grave as a result of your impatience."
The year-long jail term included eight months for the offence and a further four months from a suspended sentence imposed at an earlier date for an unrelated crime.
Mrs Storey, who was on her way back from the chemist, walked with a stick but still enjoyed an independent life.
Her nephew Mr John Tapper said: "Members of the family are still reeling from the loss, 17 months after she was so cruelly taken from us.
"She had no airs and graces, just a natural charm and a great sense of humour. She was a glass-half-full person."
Her son Mr Mark Storey said: "The trauma of that day will never go away. An empty chair stands where there was once advice and laughter."
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