A motorist who drank from a beer can as he drove at twice the speed limit caused a head-on collision which left his 14 year old passenger seriously injured, Lincoln Crown Court was told today (Monday).
William Lee ignored complaints from his young passenger in the moments leading up to the collision telling him “I’m a bad man driver”.
Richard Sheldon, prosecuting, said that Lee drove the boy to Mablethorpe reaching speeds of 110 mph.
They picked up a supply of cannabis and on the return journey Lee continued to speed ignoring the lad’s plea to slow down.
Lee drank from a can of lager while he drove and entered the village of Willoughby at between 55 and 60 mph in a 30 mph limit area.
He then overtook a parked lorry but collided head-on with a Vauxhall Astra. Lee then ran from the scene making no attempt to seek help for his young passenger who was seriously injured. The boy suffered internal injuries including two perforations of the small intestine and later underwent an operation. The driver of the Astra suffered less serious injuries. Her vehicle was a write-off.
Mr Sheldon said that three weeks later Lee contacted the 14 year old and offered him a bribe in a bid to stop him making a statement to police.
The prosecutor told the court that Lee offered the boy £1,000 together with Littlewoods vouchers and a new pair of trainers to keep his mouth shut.
Lee, 23, of Mew Gull Drive, Sutton-on-Sea, admitted causing serious injury by dangerous driving on 13 June 2015. He also admitted doing an act intended to pervert the course of justice as a result of the bribe offered in July 2015.
He was jailed for two years and four months, and banned from driving for three years.
The judge imposed an extra 14 month driving disqualification which means that the three year ban is scheduled to start on Lee’s release from his jail sentence.
Judge Simon Hirst, passing sentence, told him: “Plainly, this offending is so serious that only an immediate sentence will do.”
Daniel Church, defending, said that Lee had issues with drinking and drug taking and at the time of the offences he was also taking anti-depressant medication.
Mr Church said: “He has previously worked and he can be a hard-working member of society. He intends to return to plumbing when he is released. He wants to live a law-abiding and decent life.
“He has a good background. It upsets his family greatly to see Mr Lee in the predicament he is in due to his conduct.”