Man, 82, admits guilt over crash with motorcyclist who took ketamine


The Forum. Pic: BRITTANY WOODMAN - Credit: Archant

An 82-year-old man has been convicted of driving without due care after being involved in a crash with a motorcyclist who was under the influence of ketamine.

On May 15, an Isuzu Rodeo driven by John Newell crashed with a green Kawasaki motorbike at the A1122 Downham Road in Crimplesham, which saw Martin Robinson, the motorcyclist, airlifted to hospital.

On Tuesday, Newell, of Church Road in King's Lynn, admitted to driving without due care and attention at Norwich Magistrates' Court, having pulled out of the Fincham Road junction and into the path of Mr Robinson.

While the motorcyclist, a self-employed tattoo artist, did not appear at the hearing, an impact statement read on his behalf by prosecutor Eleanor Sheerin told how his life had been forever changed by the crash.

The statement set out a long list of life-changing injuries suffered by Mr Robinson, including a cracked neck, paralysis and mental trauma as a result of the collision - an incident he is unable to remember.

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In it, Mr Robinson said: "I can no longer walk and do not know if I will be able to move properly again. I have lost my business as I can no longer work and my family is struggling.

"This is all as a result of the collision. It has ruined my life emotionally and physically."

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However, in mitigation, Newell's solicitor said that he was riding the motorcycle without an MoT, without a valid licence, and was under the influence of ketamine at the time. He added Mr Robinson attempting to overtake a lorry may have obscured the driver's vision.

He said: "Anybody listening to the statement is going to be moved by it. However, it must be put in the context of what Mr Newell has done wrong.

"The motorbike was overtaking while approaching a junction although he [Newell] admits he should not have pulled out."

The solicitor added that Newell had been diagnosed with two forms of cancer in March of this year and that he was entering a guilty plea "because the last thing he wants is to have to come back to court".

He was fined £134, ordered to pay £85 in court costs, a £30 victim surcharge and given six points on his driving licence.

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