Death crash driver should not have faced court, say her lawyers
- Credit: Archant
Lawyers acting for a 19-year-old woman cleared of causing the death of two of her friends by dangerous driving have said the case should never have been brought to court.
Georgia Puttock, of Broadwaters Road, Lowestoft, walked free from Norwich Crown Court this week after the jury was ordered to return two not guilty verdicts.
She had pleaded not guilty to two charges of causing death by dangerous driving on July 17 last year.
Miss Puttock was driving a Vauxhall Corsa when it collided with a Mercedes on the A143-A146, near Gillingham, after she tried to avoid an overtaking car.
Kathryn Rivett, 18, and Sam Jaggard, also 18, who were passengers in the Corsa, were both killed while Miss Puttock sustained serious injuries.
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Now Miss Puttock's defence team has issued a statement criticising the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) for bringing the case to court.
Damien Moore, solicitor and partner from Fosters Solicitors said the defence team had instructed an experienced forensic road traffic consultant to review the prosecution evidence. The expert's opinion was that Miss Puttock was not responsible for the accident and the report was served upon the CPS in the hope the case would be discontinued.
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Mr Moore said the decision by the CPS to continue the case caused 'much anxiety' to Miss Puttock.
He said: 'Georgia Puttock is naturally very relieved that the CPS eventually made the correct decision in discontinuing the case against her.
'Georgia is of course saddened that she had to endure so many months of uncertainty at a time when she was, and is still, grieving for the death of her two closest friends.'
Frank Ferguson, deputy chief crown prosecutor for CPS East of England, said the evidence presented to the CPS was that witnesses saw no justification for Miss Puttock's car to lose control and cross in to the opposite carriageway. He said the CPS concluded that there was sufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction and that this was a case that should be heard before a jury.
He added: 'The purpose of a trial is to test the evidence in court. While giving evidence, one of the witnesses put forward an account of events which had not previously been presented, as to why Miss Puttock lost control. In light of this evidence, the prosecution quite properly reconsidered its case and decided there was no longer a realistic prospect of conviction.'