A man in his 20s has been jailed for six years after a crash which killed an 18-year-old girl who was described as a "ray of sunshine".

Teegan Brabant, 21, of Litcham Road in Mileham, appeared at King’s Lynn Crown Court for sentencing today having previously pleaded guilty to death by dangerous driving and causing bodily harm by wanton or furious driving. 

Brabant had been driving a silver Ford Fiesta in the early hours of Saturday, September 17, 2022, when he collided with a tree on the B1110, between the B1145 junction and Hall Road in North Elmham.

READ MORE: Tribute paid to 'ray of sunshine' 18-year-old who died in crash

Emergency services attended the scene and the front seat passenger, 18-year-old Mariana Faustino Valente, was taken to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital by ambulance with life-threatening injuries.

She died in the early hours of Monday, September 19, 2022.

Miss Valente, a former Dereham Neatherd High School who lived in the town, was described as a "ray of sunshine" in a tribute from a family friend.

Eastern Daily Press: Mariana Valente (right) who died in a crash on the B1110 in North Elmham Mariana Valente (right) who died in a crash on the B1110 in North Elmham (Image: Julie Bond)

Julie Bond, the mother of Mariana's best friend Tallulah Bond, described her as "an absolute treasure".

She said: "I was absolutely gobsmacked when I heard the news, no one should have to bury their daughter."

Tallulah described her best friend as "my sidekick, my future, my everything".

Both of the rear seat passengers were also injured with one fracturing a wrist.

The passengers described Brabant’s driving as dangerous and falling below the standard you would expect.

Eastern Daily Press: Flowers were left at the scene of the crash which killed Mariana ValenteFlowers were left at the scene of the crash which killed Mariana Valente (Image: Archant)

The court heard that Brabant was aware the car had a deflating tyre after the passengers witnessed him pumping it up before the journey.

The vehicle examination also found one of the tyres to be bald with the tread depth well below the legal limit.  

As well as being jailed for six years, Brabant was disqualified from driving for eight years and told he must take an extended driving test before he can drive again.

READ MORE: Woman in late teens dies after car crashed into tree

Detective Inspector Dave McCormack said: "Brabant not only drove recklessly but made reckless choices knowing that his vehicle was in a dangerous condition. 

"His driving cost a young woman her life and injured two other young women."

Investigating officer, DC Dylan Thomas added: “This is a tragic case that could have been averted had Mr Brabant driven in accordance with his level of experience and the rules of the road.”