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I’m so sorry – death crash driver’s tears
7:44am Thursday 24th October 2013 in News
A MAN who killed a mother-of- three in a high-speed crash on the A46 near Evesham, has been cleared of causing her death by dangerous driving.
A jury of seven men and five women retired for less than an hour before returning a not guilty verdict on Steven Moore, aged 43, of Goodeve Park in Hazlewood Road, Bristol.
His car struck a motorcycle being driven by Diana Burgess between Beckford and Ashton-under-Hill, on October 16 last year and she died at the scene.
Sentencing Moore for causing death by careless driving, a charge to which he had pleaded guilty, Judge Robert Juckes QC imposed a two-year commmunity order with a 200-hour unpaid work requirement.
He disqualified Moore for two years, ordered him to retake a test and imposed £535 court costs.
Nicholas Berry, defending, had argued against custody being imposed. He said Moore was a single father with a 17-year-old son who suffered from learning difficulties.
The judge said why Moore failed to see Mrs Burgess, 40, of Pershore Road, could never be understood but his remorse was genuine and it would be with him for the rest of his life.
Prosecutor Peter Grice said Moore was driving towards Evesham when he slowed down to turn into the Vale Cafe and drifted on to the opposite carriageway into the path of Mrs Burgess. She was thrown from the bike and landed on the grass verge.
Mrs Burgess had been riding a bright green Kawazaki motorbike and was “there to be seen”, Mr Grice said.
"Anyone executing a manoeuvre across a junction like that would be failing in their competence as a driver if they did not pay attention to the road ahead. Driving conditions were essentially perfect.
We say he was driving dangerously.”
On Tuesday, Moore gave a tearful apology to Mrs Burgess’ family. He said: “I'm so sorry. I'd just like to say sorry for everything I’ve brought on you. I didn’t go out to do this on purpose. If there is ever anything I can do for you in the future, please come to me. I’m so, so sorry.”
He told the court: “I did look at the road ahead – I’m not saying I looked for long enough. I glanced.
“It would be foolish to cross a carriageway of a 60mph road without looking first, but I know I didn’t look well enough. I didn’t see the bike coming. I just can’t believe I have been involved in something like this."
Defending, Mr Berry said causing the death of another person did not make the driving automatically dangerous.
The cause of the accident was Moore’s failure to look ahead and spot the oncoming motorcyclist. There was no evidence that he had been using his mobile phone or that he was intoxicated.
Mrs Burgess was born in Nijmegen, Holland, and moved to England in her early 20s.
Her three daughters Hannah, Eve and Emma, were aged just five, three and two when she died.
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