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Drunk van driver jailed for crushing car and killing passenger | UK News

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An “extremely drunk” driver who killed a man by running over his girlfriend’s car in a 7.5-tonne van has been jailed for nine years.

Adam Kershaw, 29, had been driving in an “utterly dreadful, appalling and highly dangerous” manner when he lost control of his vehicle and crushed the Peugeot 107 on the A65 near Ingleton in North Yorkshire.

He “effectively drove over” the hatchback car on 13 July 2018, leaving its passenger Joseph Keane with fatal head injuries on what was his 28th birthday.

Joseph Keane suffered fatal head injuries
Image:
Joseph Keane suffered fatal head injuries

Before the incident, Kershaw had narrowly avoided a collision with a coach carrying 60 schoolchildren as he swerved across the road into the path of oncoming traffic.

Kershaw, of Mytholmroyd, West Yorkshire, was also seen hitting a stone bridge during a 28-mile journey that a judge described as “the worst case of dangerous driving it has been my misfortune to come across”.

Bradford Crown Court heard how Kershaw was travelling to the Beat-Herder Festival in Sawley, Lancashire, when the incident happened, having spent the previous night drinking and taking ketamine with friends.

The modified van crushed the Peugeot car after taking a corner at 55mph
Image:
The modified van crushed the Peugeot car after taking a corner at 55mph

He did not have a licence to drive the van or valid insurance, and had crudely converted the vehicle into an “unsafe” camper van with no restraints for the driver and rear passengers.

Several motorists called 999 to report his driving, which prosecutor Jonathan Sharp said was “consistent with him being highly intoxicated throughout”.

When he collided with the Peugeot, which was being driven by the victim’s girlfriend Alyssa Henderson, he had taken a corner at 55mph and was driving on the wrong side of the road.

Kershaw, who has two children, did not help the couple or speak to Ms Henderson, who was “covered in blood and hysterical with grief”.

In a statement read to the court, she said: “Little did I know this would be our last time together. A happy day turned into the worst day of my life.”

Mitigating for Kershaw, who had previous convictions for drink-driving and speeding, Imran Khan said the defendant stopped both drinking and driving after the collision and was “disgusted” by his actions.

Judge Jonathan Rose also banned Kershaw from driving for 11-and-a-half years and told him he would have to pass an extended driving test before he could drive again.

Sentencing Kershaw, who pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving, judge Jonathan Rose told him: “You were incapable of controlling this very large, very heavy vehicle. You had no reason to be driving as you did. It was all done because you were in drink.”

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