Driver jailed for causing death of baby

|News, Driving offences

A 29-year-old driver has today (17 August) been jailed for more than three years for causing the death of a baby following a head-on car crash.

Reuben Johnson was sentenced at Wolverhampton Crown Court after pleading guilty to the offence which happened on 19 August 2016 on the A34 Birmingham Road.

The court heard that on the day of the incident, Malia Porter, who was four months old at the time, was travelling with her family in a Ford Focus car from Shrewsbury to Birmingham. The victim was in her car seat in the back of the vehicle, however, as she had become upset and was crying, her mother removed her from the seat and placed her on her lap in the front passenger seat using the three point belt to secure them both.

The defendant was also driving along the A34 - which has a speed limit of 30mph - at 60mph.

As the cars approached the junction with Claremont Road, the defendant veered across the single carriageway and collided head on with the Ford Focus.

The emergency services were called to the scene but Malia passed away from her injuries.
Johnson was arrested and on 2 July 2018 and pleaded guilty of causing death by dangerous driving.

He was sentenced to three years and two months’ imprisonment.

David Parsons from the CPS said: “Reuben Johnson was travelling at twice the speed limit set on that stretch of road resulting in him losing control of his car and colliding head on with another vehicle.

“Prior to the collision, Malia Porter had been removed from her car seat and placed on her mother’s lap secured by the three point seat belt which provided no protection for her when the two cars collided.

“We hope that this prosecution not only reminds all motorists to obey the speed limits which have been set for your safety, but also for drivers to ensure that your passengers are secured in your vehicles at all times in the appropriate seats.

“Our thoughts are today with the family of Malia.”

Notes to editors

  • David Parsons is a Senior Crown Prosecutor with CPS West Midlands
  • Reuben Johnson (23.7.1988) was charged and pleaded guilty to one count of causing death by dangerous driving

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