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Boxing Day crash driver admits causing death of two teenage passengers

PUBLISHED: 06:00 15 February 2020 | UPDATED: 10:38 15 February 2020

The scene of the fatal crash on the A14 eastbound at Rougham  Picture: GREGG BROWN

The scene of the fatal crash on the A14 eastbound at Rougham Picture: GREGG BROWN

A 20-year-old has admitted causing the death of two teenagers in a Boxing Day crash on the A14 in Suffolk.

William Smedley, described by his family as a kind and caring young man  Picture: SUPPLIED BY SUFFOLK CONSTABULARYWilliam Smedley, described by his family as a kind and caring young man Picture: SUPPLIED BY SUFFOLK CONSTABULARY

George Mills pleaded guilty to two counts of causing death by dangerous driving at Ipswich Crown Court on Friday.

Jake Paxton and William Smedley both died as a result of a collision between two cars on the eastbound carriageway of the A14 near Rougham more than two years ago.

Police were called at about 9.30pm on December 26, 2017, to reports of a crash involving a black Vauxhall Corsa and a grey Ford Fiesta.

The Ford Fiesta was being driven by Mills, of Stow Road, Ixworth.

Floral tributes to William Smedley, who died in the collision on the A14 near Rougham  Picture: ARCHANTFloral tributes to William Smedley, who died in the collision on the A14 near Rougham Picture: ARCHANT

Mr Paxton, 18, from Bury St Edmunds, who was a passenger in the car, was taken to Addenbrooke's Hospital but later died as a result of his injuries.

Mr Smedley, also 18, was a second passenger and died at the scene.

A 19-year-old woman, who was driving the Vauxhall Corsa, escaped uninjured.

After his death, Mr Paxton's family shared their devastation in a statement, which read: "Jake was beautiful inside and out.

Jake Paxton, who died following the crash on the A14 in Rougham on Boxing DayJake Paxton, who died following the crash on the A14 in Rougham on Boxing Day

"He was loved so very, very much by all his family and those close to him."

Another statement released through Suffolk police, on behalf of Mr Smedley's family, read: "Caring son, loving grandson, doting big brother, a loyal, kind, generous beautiful young man gone but never ever forgotten."

A memorial event was held the day after the crash in the Arc Shopping Centre car park, in Bury St Edmunds, where the two teenagers used to meet up and socialise.

Flowers were laid and balloons were released into the air as a tribute to the pair.

Mills had been due to enter pleas on September 10 last year, but was not well enough to attend Ipswich Crown Court.

The case was adjourned until December 17, when Mills entered not guilty pleas, and a trial date was set for the same court on February 24.

On Friday, he admitted both charges, which, he was told by Judge David Goodin, were of the utmost seriousness, and that he faced the inevitable consequence of a custodial sentence.

Mills will learn his fate on Friday, February 28, following the preparation of a pre-sentence report by the probation service.

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