Surgeon plans to appeal dangerous driving conviction
A surgeon convicted of seriously injuring a midwife in a crash has said he plans to file an appeal against the decision as the collision had been an "horrendous accident".
Vascular surgery consultant Harald Geogloman, of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, was found guilty of causing serious injury by dangerous driving after a two-day trial at King’s Lynn Crown Court.
The 54-year-old was on his way to work at the QEH in Lynn when his Audi collided with a Nissan Micra being driven by Joy Richardson, who was on her way home from a night shift at the hospital.
While he awaits sentencing, a judge has told Geogloman jailing him would be “a complete waste” and would “deprive the public of his services”.
The crash happened on the A148 at Harpley, near Lynn, just after 8am on Sunday, January 15, 2017, the court was told.
Mrs Richardson, a midwife at the QEH for 35 years, suffered a broken sternum, four fractured toes, a head injury and bruising.
Geogloman contested in court he had been travelling on the wrong side of the road through the village to avoid parked cars on the opposite side, but had returned to the correct lane when he turned onto the A148.
But Mrs Richardson and another witness claimed he had been driving in the wrong lane on the A148.
“The impression out in the community is that in a moment of madness I was driving on the incorrect side of the road throughout the village and causing a crash which caused serious injuries,” he said.
“It was a horrendous thing to happen but I see this as an accident. The plan is to appeal.”
Geogloman said he was in the correct lane as the Micra approached but he had “nowhere to go” to avoid the collision.
“My initial reaction was feeling very sorry for her for being injured,” he said. “She has suffered serious injuries and I wish I could make it so this thing never happened.”
He added: “A lot depends on what the sentence will be. At the moment I am off work considering the gravity of what has happened.
“My whole aim in life is to help people. I have been putting all my efforts into being a good citizen.
“If I go to prison it could be I can no longer practice as a doctor. Maybe ever.
“As a surgeon if there was something I could do differently or better I would put my hands up and say so.
“It is much better to admit and show how you deal with your mistakes and what you have done wrong. Even if this decision is over ruled it will still have an impact on us.
“Accidents can happen and I am sorry someone has got seriously injured in an accident I was involved in.”
Mrs Richardson said in court said she was driving home from a night shift along the A148 when she saw a car coming towards her in the wrong lane.
She said she swerved into the right hand lane to avoid it, but it also swerved into the same lane and they collided.
Geogloman said he had driven on the right hand side through the village because there were parked cars on the right hand side.
But gamekeeper Robert Hall, who was driving behind him, said in court there were no parked cars.
Geogloman, of Peregrine Mews, Cringleford, admitted he may have strayed briefly into the wrong lane, after taking a wide turn onto the main road to avoid an icy slip road. He said Mrs Richardson’s car had strayed towards the centre of the road as it approached him prior to the collision.
Judge Stephen Holt banned Geogloman from driving and told him: “It seems to me this does pass the custody threshold but it would be a complete waste to imprison you and deprive the public of your services.”
He adjourned sentencing until Friday, March 8.