Ipswich: HGV driver to lose job after fleeing scene of crash after murdered cousin’s wake

South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court

South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court - Credit: Archant

A heavy goods driver faces losing his job after magistrates banned him from the road for fleeing the scene of a crash.

Steven Kimble, of Stradbroke Road, Ipswich, was sentenced at South East Suffolk Magistrates Court on Monday after pleading guilty on September 30 to failing to stop and driving without due care.

Magistrates heard how Kimble was returning from his murdered cousin’s wake when he smashed into another car at the junction of Spring Road and Cauldwell Hall Road at 10.15pm on July 17.

Prosecuting, Wayne Ablett, said David Barnes suffered minor injuries when his silver Mercedes was spun 180 degrees and crashed into a lamp post after being hit by Kimble’s BMW.

A bar worker from the Old Times pub was said to have heard “screeching brakes and an almighty bang”.

Kimble was described by the bar worker as being unsteady on his feet, when he made off towards Woodbridge Road with two female passengers, the court heard.

Another witness from the pub reported Kimble slurring his speech as he shouted “run, run” to one of the women, Mr Ablett said.

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He told magistrates that when police attended Kimble’s house the following morning, he had no recollection of what had happened.

Shelley Drew, defending, said Kimble was ‘deeply remorseful’ about the accident and that he was ‘not in his usual frame of mind’.

She said he had no recollection of the accident but, despite drinking at the wake, ‘did not feel drunk’.

The court heard how Kimble’s employer would be forced to let him go should he receive more than six penalty points. Ms Drew said this could have a ‘devastating impact’ on Kimble and his family.

“This appears to be wholly out of character, only explicable because of the circumstances of the day,” she added.

Magistrates, however, said they saw “no reason to diverge from our guidelines”. Crediting Kimble’s early guilty plea, magistrates sentenced him to 18 weeks, suspended for two years, banned him from driving for nine months and ordered him to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work.

Kimble was also ordered to pay an £80 victim surcharge and contribute £85 to the prosecution’s costs.