Pair locked up for Sian Ryan death crash horror

IPSWICH: No sentence will bring back my baby.

The grieving mother of Sian Ryan said the death of her youngest child in a horror crash on the A14 should serve as an important message to other young drivers in control of a “lethal weapon.”

Perri Daniel and Gavin Sahota are today starting their lives behind bars after being sentenced to three years in a young offenders’ institution for their parts in causing the death of the popular 16-year-old.

The inexperienced drivers were both found guilty of causing the 16-year-old Copleston High School pupil’s death by dangerous driving by a jury at their trial at Ipswich Crown Court on June 9.

At Ipswich Crown Court Judge David Goodin yesterday sentenced both Daniel, 20, of Upper Cavendish Street and Sahota, 19, of Stewart Young Grove, Kesgrave to three years in a young offenders’ institution.

They were both disqualified from driving for three years, effective from their conviction date in June.

Sian, of Alan Road, Ipswich was the front seat passenger in Daniel’s Citroen Saxo when it span out of control and crashed on the A14, colliding with a road sign at Nacton on August 17 last year.

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With only seven months’ driving experience between them, Daniel weaved across the road while Sahota performed a dangerous undertaking manoeuvre in his Audi A3 before the vehicles collided, causing the horror crash.

Speaking outside court Chrissie Ryan, Sian’s mum, said the sentences were what her family had expected.

“They have no choice now but to expect what they have done,” she said. “Even if they had got 100 years, nothing will bring Sian back.

“It is over now, we can enjoy sharing all of our wonderful memories of Sian without the dark cloud that has been hanging over us.”

Sentencing the pair Judge David Goodin said: “No sentence of this court can restore Sian to her family and friends and no words of mine can mitigate their loss and the grief that will live with them forever.

“Sian died as a passenger of your car Perri Daniel from the consequences of your dangerous driving and of yours Gavin Sahota.

“Neither of you intended the terrible consequences of that course of driving that ended with Sian’s death.

“You were both young, inexperienced drivers behind the wheel of powerful motor cars. The driving of each of you encouraged the other.

“At the end of it all Perri Daniel you lost a friend you had known for ten years and you Gavin Sahota a young girl you admired and with whom you hoped to begin a romantic relationship.”

Christopher Paxton said his client, Daniel, has struggled to come to terms with the loss of her best friend resorting to thoughts of self-harm.

He said: “Miss Daniel knows she was the driver of the vehicle in which her friend was killed.

“Time will not diminish the burden she will carry.

“It maybe felt by others Miss Daniel has not shown signs of remorse, that is far from the reality.”

Sahota was also sentenced for making threats to kill at Liquid nightclub in Ipswich while on bail over the tragedy.

He pleaded guilty to threatening a nightclub manager with a kitchen knife in the early hours of May 3.

Judge Goodin sentenced him to five months extra detention for the offence.

<Panel - Important message to young drivers>

Chrissie Ryan warned other young people to stop and think about their actions when in charge of a car, a “lethal weapon.”

She said: “This sends a very important message to young people driving. I will never get my baby back but if this can help save at least one life, some good will have come of this nightmare.”

And Pc Andrew Fossey, of Suffolk police’s serious collision investigation team added: “This highlights the dangers of people mucking about on the roads.

“People need to treat the roads with respect. A moment of madness is all it takes for the waste of a young life who obviously had so much to live for.

“It is not just a message to young drivers but all drivers to bear in mind the consequences of their actions.”