Drink driver crashed into 102-year-old motorist in Norwich crash

Lower Clarence Road in Norwich. Photo: Adrian Judd

Lower Clarence Road in Norwich. Photo: Adrian Judd - Credit: Archant © 2004

A drink-driver who ploughed into a 102-year-old motorist who had been looking to turn into a Norwich road has been told by a judge it was 'pure luck' no-one was killed in the crash.

Charles Burrell, 35, had been driving a white Mercedes car on the wrong side of the road and at "excessive speed" along Lower Clarence Road in Norwich when he crashed into another car which had been waiting to turn into Stracey Road at the time.

Chris Youell, prosecuting at Norwich Crown Court, said Burrell's car struck the victim's car before ploughing into a wall.

The incident was captured on the dashcam of a car which had left a car park close to the scene and was passed at speed by the white Merecedes before the crash.

Mr Youell said "fortunately" there had been no members of the public walking along the road at the time the crash happened on September 15 last year.


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He said the victim, who was 102 at the time of the incident, suffered whiplash as a result of the crash and was taken to hospital as a precaution.

But rather than checking on how the victim was Mr Youell said Burrell "fled the scene".

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Mr Youell said "public-spirited member of the public" saw what had happened and followed the defendant before alerting police to what had happened.

He went onto provide a breath test which showed he was almost twice the legal limit for driving.

Burrell appeared in court on Thursday (July 4) for sentence having previously admitted dangerous driving.

He also admitted a number of other matters, including failing to stop after an accident and driving with excess alcohol.

Sentencing Burrell to nine months custody, suspended for 18 months, Judge Stephen Holt said: "It's pure luck that no-one was seriously injured or even killed."

He said Burrell "legged it" rather than checking the injured driver was okay and was only arrested after a member of the public "kept you under surveillance" and informed police.

Burrell, from Birmingham, was disqualified from driving for a total of 40 months and ordered to take an extended retest.

He was also ordered to carry out 200 hours unpaid work and 20 Rehabilitation Activity Requirement (RAR) days.

Rob Pollington, mitigating, said the defendant had shown a "level of remorse", had referred to his own "stupidity" and put forward "no excuse" for his driving.

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