A MOMENTARY lack of attention resulted in the death of a motor scooter rider going home from work, a court has heard.
Philip Stainton, 56, a retired policeman from Mareham on the Hill, Horncastle, admitted causing the death of Richard Parkin by driving without due care and attention on November 15 last year.
Edward Johnson, prosecuting, told Skegness Magistrates’ Court that at 6.40pm, Mr Parkin, a married man with two sons, was riding home from his work as a supervisor at Staples, along the A52.
He said Stainton was crossing the A52 in his Volkswagen Caddy van from the C627 at Friskney into the path of Mr Parkin’s Yamaha scooter, which struck the left passenger door, causing fatal injuries to Mr Parkin.
Mr Johnson said the police investigation suggested the scooter was displaying dipped headlights and Mr Parkin was wearing a high visibility jacket.
He said the scooter should have been visible to Stainton for at least 14 seconds, if not 20 seconds – “a significant amount of time” he said “which equated to 375 metres.”
The magistrates viewed video footage of a police reconstruction of what would have been Stainton’s view on the night of the accident.
A victim impact statement from Mr Parkins’ widow, Samantha, was read to the court, in which she said they had married in March 1992 and had two sons.
She said he regularly used the A52 and knew the road well.
She said he texted her to say he was finishing work at 6.30pm and expected to be home at 7pm.
She said: “I can’t imagine the rest of my life without him.
“The kids have lost their dad and their kids a granddad,” she said.
In mitigation, David Eager said no-one regretted what had happened more than Philip Stainton, a retired rural beat officer who had led an impeccable life up to this point.
He said that on this occasion “he had let himself down briefly.”
“There will always be tragic accidents arising out of a momentary lack of attention, and this is the sort of case this falls into,” he told the magistrates.
He said that if Mr Parkin was driving at the speed limit he would have been visible for just 14 seconds, during which time Stainton had to pull up and look right, forward and left.
“What he didn’t do was to look left again,” he said.
“If he’d held his view just half a second longer to his left, a man would not be dead and we would not be here today.”
The magistrates offered their sympathies to Mrs Parkin and her family and said the case had had a catastrophic effect on both families.
They said there were no aggravating circumstances and that Stainton had had a momentary lack of attention with fatal consequences.
They imposed an immediate ban on driving for Stainton and adjourned for sentencing on October 4 after a report has been prepared by the Probation Service.
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Sunday 19 May 2013
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