Teenage driver sentenced for causing death of Julie Shaw in Crofton, Wakefield

15/01/2015

A teenage driver, who changed his plea to guilty as his trial for causing death by dangerous driving was due to start in December 2014, has been sentenced at Leeds Crown Court today to two and a half years in jail and disqualified from driving for five years with the requirement to pass an extended driving test .

Stephen Cutmore's change of plea came after having been presented with evidence from both crown and defence experts that in September 2013 he was travelling between 45 and 64 miles per hour (and most likely at the upper end of this range) as he approached a 30 mph speed limit, and came across another vehicle turning across his path. Swerving to avoid it, he collided with pedestrian Julie Shaw. The carer and mother of two died at the scene, at Crofton, West Yorkshire, from her injuries.

CPS Crown Advocate Heather Gilmore said: "This was a tragic case in which the life of the victim was cruelly and needlessly cut short. Stephen Cutmore, an inexperienced young driver, was travelling at excessive speed and was therefore incapable of slowing or stopping when he approached a 30 mph zone and a car ahead of him turning across his path. Swerving to avoid the car, he collided with Julie, who was standing on the pavement.

"I hope the sentence handed down today is of some comfort to Julie's family. This case clearly illustrates the terrible dangers of driving at excessive speed and I hope it makes other young drivers think twice about the potentially lethal consequences when getting behind the wheel of a car."