Monday 11 May 2009

A tale of two punishments

The killer driver was doing 40 mph in a 30 mph zone. He had previous driving convictions. He was still serving out the period of a previous suspended sentence. He will be back on the roads in twelve months:

A driver who killed a pedestrian while trying to beat an amber light has been jailed for seven months. Lee Powell, 24, from Newport, was speeding when he hit Shirley Potts, 50, as she stepped on to the crossing. She died instantly when her head hit the windscreen, throwing her 85ft (26m) through the air.

Powell, who had previous convictions including one for drink-driving, admitted causing death by careless driving at Cardiff Crown Court.
A suspended sentence for a previous conviction was not activated and he will serve no additional time in jail as a result.

Contrast that indulgent treatment of a killer driver with the attitude of the judiciary to this first-time offender:

A teenage girl has been jailed for causing a pregnant driver to crash her car by throwing a juice carton off a motorway bridge. Laura Gibbard admitted hitting the windscreen of the woman, who then swerved off the road and crashed into a tree.

Neither the driver – who was 15 weeks pregnant – or the unborn baby were seriously hurt in the smash on the M27 near Fareham in Hampshire. 'There is no sensible excuse for your conduct,' Recorder Nicholas Hall told Portsmouth crown court
as he jailed Gibbard for nine months.