Teen jailed for ly­ing to po­lice af­ter woman died in col­li­sion

South Wales Echo - - NEWS -

A TEENAGER has been jailed for ly­ing to po­lice fol­low­ing a col­li­sion in Cardiff which killed a young woman.

Lewis Hall, 18, was sen­tenced at Cardiff Crown Court af­ter plead­ing guilty to in­tend­ing to per­vert the course of jus­tice in re­la­tion to the fa­tal col­li­sion in the early hours of Au­gust 22.

Judge Thomas Crowther QC told the de­fen­dant: “This lie served to dis­tract rather than di­vert the in­ves­ti­ga­tion.”

So­phie Tay­lor, from Llandaff, was 22 when she died fol­low­ing the in­ci­dent on Me­teor Street.

Pros­e­cu­tors said she had been in a re­la­tion­ship for about a month with Michael Wheeler.

The 22-year-old from Har­lech Road in Rum­ney has ad­mit­ted caus­ing death by dan­ger­ous driv­ing and caus­ing se­ri­ous in­jury by dan­ger­ous driv­ing.

Pros­e­cu­tor Matthew Cobb said the pair shared an in­ter­est in mo­tor­bikes and Wheeler per­suaded Ms Tay­lor to take out a loan to buy him an off-road mo­tor­bike.

But he avoided her the next day and she re­alised she had been “conned”.

Mr Cobb said this led to “hos­til­ity” be­tween the pair, as Wheeler avoided all con­tact, which led to a car chase through the city – from Rover Way, through Splott to New­port Road on Au­gust 22.

Pros­e­cu­tors said Hall was not in­volved in the chase, but re­ceived a call from his friend, Wheeler’s sis­ter Lisa, say­ing there had been a col­li­sion.

He went to the scene – which had been cor­doned off by po­lice – with other friends and met Wheeler.

Af­ter be­ing ar­rested, Wheeler ad­mit­ted be­ing be­hind the wheel but ini­tially de­nied re­spon­si­bil­ity for the col­li­sion.

Hall was in­ter­viewed the next day and told po­lice he had been with Wheeler all evening, driv­ing around Cardiff Bay and New­port Road as a pas­sen­ger in his car.

He told of­fi­cers there was “noth­ing un­to­ward” about his friend’s driv­ing and when he was shown CCTV, claimed the driv­ing looked worse than it felt.

Mr Cobb said: “He was plainly eva­sive and un­clear.”

Hall claimed he had lit­tle rec­ol­lec­tion of the de­tail of events, as he had been look­ing at his phone to find mu­sic.

Pros­e­cu­tors said he was warned about the con­se­quences of ly­ing and asked for a break, but re­turned to con­firm his ac­count was true.

Hall asked for another in­ter­view eight days later on Septem­ber 1 and ad­mit­ted he had lied in his pre­vi­ous in­ter­views.

He claimed it had been Wheeler’s idea to lie and said he did not ap­pre­ci­ate how se­ri­ous the col­li­sion had been.

Jonathan Rees, de­fend­ing, stressed his client had no pre­vi­ous con­vic­tions and said the of­fend­ing was “en­tirely out of char­ac­ter”.

He drew the judge’s at­ten­tion to a se­ries of char­ac­ter ref­er­ences, in­clud­ing from col­lege tu­tors, and said a re­port from the Pro­ba­tion Ser­vice sug­gested Hall pre­sented a low risk of re­of­fend­ing.

Mr Rees ar­gued the lies had “very lit­tle ef­fect” on the po­lice in­ves­ti­ga­tion, as of­fi­cers were scep­ti­cal from the out­set, and stressed his client re­turned to set the record straight “of his own vo­li­tion”.

Hall, from Whit­muir Road, Tre­morfa, Cardiff, was jailed for two months for in­tend­ing to per­vert the course of jus­tice.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.