Teenager jailed for dangerous driving that injured six of his friends
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A 19 year old man from Stevenage has been jailed following a road traffic collision in Hitchin that left multiple people with severe, life-changing injuries.
On 3 December 2021 at 11.36pm, police were called to serious collision in Park Street. One car was involved, a silver Ford Fiesta, which contained seven people in total – with the car designed to carry a maximum of five.
The court heard how the vehicle was described as driving ‘erratically’, swerving in and out of lanes and driving at speed. The driver lost control and mounted a kerb, causing his vehicle to spin out of control and collide with a house.
There was a significant emergency services response, with all seven occupants of the vehicle sustaining serious injuries – the ambulance service declared the collision a major incident due to the amount of resources needed at the scene.
One of the passengers suffered life changing injuries including organ damage, bleeds to the brain, and a collapsed lung, resulting in them needing to be put into an induced coma. He continues to recover.
The driver of the vehicle, Jack Clark, from Blackdown Close, Stevenage, who was 18 at the time, was arrested at the scene. Following an extensive investigation, he was subsequently charged with four counts of causing serious injury by dangerous driving.
He pleaded guilty and appeared at St Albans Crown Court for sentencing on Thursday 1 June. He was jailed for two years and three months and was disqualified from driving for four years. He must spend at least half of the term in custody before being considered for release on licence.
Sergeant Tom Pearson, who led the investigation, said: “Jack had only passed his driving test 24 days prior to the collision, and had only had the car for 17 days. His driving was reckless, dangerous and has evidently had serious consequences for all involved.
“Speeding and driving dangerously is not impressive – especially when you risk serious and devastating consequences as evidenced in this case. Just prior to the collision, his passengers repeatedly pleaded with him to slow down and were understandably scared of the manner in which he was driving the car.
“All of the occupants of the vehicle were seriously injured, with some of them sustaining life changing injuries that will impact them forever – I hope Clark is aware, that as result of his reckless use of the road, he was fortunate that his actions did not leave a family grieving for their loved one.
“Please think twice about getting into a car with someone if you have any reservations at all about their manner of driving; it’s not worth the risks.”