Drug driver jailed for causing death by dangerous driving on A50

|News, Driving offences , Drug offences

A 49-year-old van driver has today been sentenced at Stoke Crown Court to six years and nine months' imprisonment after pleading guilty to drug driving and causing the death of David Rowlatt by dangerous driving on the A50 in Uttoxeter.

On 31 August 2017, Mark Fenton was driving an Iveco Daily van westbound along the A50 in Uttoxeter. He overtook a large goods vehicle which was travelling in lane one of the carriageway and as he completed his manoeuvre he moved back into lane one, in doing so, his vehicle clipped the rear offside corner of a Mercedes Sprinter van which was being driven in front of him by the 62-year-old victim.

The collision caused Mr Rowlatt’s van to leave the carriageway and travel onto the nearside verge where it overturned.

Members of the public called the emergency services, but Mr Rowlatt passed away at the scene from his injuries.

The police subjected Fenton to a roadside drug test which gave a positive result for cocaine. He was arrested and later pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving and driving a vehicle whilst unfit through drugs.

Georgina Davies, with the Crown Prosecution Service, said: “Taking drugs or alcohol and then driving puts not only yourself in danger but other road users too. Our advice is to never drug- or drink-drive.

“This prosecution highlights those dangers because in this case Mark Fenton’s decision to drive after taking cocaine had the gravest of consequences when his collision with Mr Rowlatt’s vehicle caused his death.

“Although there is little we can say that will adequately reflect their loss, our thoughts are today with the family and friends of Mr Rowlatt.”

Notes to editors

  • Georgina Davies is a Senior Crown Prosecutor with West Midlands CPS
  • Mark Fenton’s D.o.B. is 9/02/1969.

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