Man who knocked down and killed tourist to be jailed

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High Court Justice Iain Morley has promised to move away from the norm and jail a man found guilty of causing death by dangerous driving instead of imposing the usual fine or compensation.
The criminal court adjudicator has already forewarned 27-year-old Ruan Roberts of his fate which will be formally handed down today.
Over the past 15 or more years, the court has ordered compensation to be paid to victims’ families and fines to the court for convicts in cases of causing death by dangerous driving.
Justice Morley, however, said he believes the starting point in such matters should always be a custodial sentence, and given the circumstances in this case, incarceration is suitable.
The maximum sentence for the offence under the Vehicles and Road Traffic Act, is five years in prison. The court also has the power to impose a fine and order compensation.
A jury found Roberts guilty last December of causing the death of U.K. visitor Teresa Cummins by dangerous driving; and his sentence was put off from the scheduled date earlier this year, to today.
The prosecution’s case, which was argued by Crown Counsel Adlai Smith, was that there was a combination of speeding, not braking or blowing a horn, inattentiveness and not putting on the bright lights in a poorly lit area. Additionally, it was raining on Valley Church Road where the accident occurred some time after 10 p.m. on July 19, 2015.
There were no skid marks on the scene to indicate that the driver made an attempt to brake to slow down or stop the vehicle.
Roberts testified that he was driving at about 30 mph, and said that the area where the accident occurred was dimly lit.  The speed limit on that road, according to the evidence, is 15-20 mph. But at the time of the accident, there were no signs that stated the speed limit.
The Urlings man said that another vehicle was coming from the opposite direction, with its bright lights on and at the same time he saw the victim’s feet when she was walking on the road.
Roberts, who was represented by John Fuller and Siobhan Leandro, said he dimmed his lights but the other driver did not, and he swerved to try to avoid hitting Cummins, but it was too late.
The prosecution contended that under those conditions which Roberts pointed out, he should have been more cautious when driving.
The medical evidence which the pathologist presented at trial, showed that Cummins had several fractured ribs; her lungs had collapsed and she also had a “hinge fracture”, which is a fracture at the base of the neck and with that, a person would have a low survival rate.
The woman was pronounced dead on the scene that night. At the time of the accident, she, her daughter and several other people were walking home from a party.

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