Teenage driver who caused serious Dereham crash while high on cannabis is spared custody
- Credit: SIMON FINLAY
A teenage driver who caused a serious head-on crash while high on cannabis has been spared a custodial sentence.
Rhys Moore was sentenced at Norwich Crown Court yesterday after pleading guilty to causing injury by dangerous driving at an earlier hearing.
The 18-year-old crashed while driving with two passengers in his car on the B1135 Yaxham Road, near Dereham, on September 27 last year.
It left one teenage girl, who was sitting in the back seat, with serious and long-term injuries.
Moore received a suspended sentence and was disqualified from driving for two years.
The court heard how the defendant had just overtaken a line of vehicles in a 30mph zone when he lost control of his white Peugeot 205.
At the time of the impact he had been on the wrong side of the road and struck a red Skoda Fabia driving in the opposite direction.
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Prosecutor Stephen Spence told the court how the defendant was heading towards Yaxham and had been 'egged on' to see how fast he could get there. The crash resulted in five people being taken to hospital, with the 16-year-old passenger in his car losing her spleen.
A victim statement read out in court heard how she would have to be on medication for the rest of her life.
Her statement said: 'I don't want anyone else to go through what I did and I don't think Rhys should be driving at all.
'I don't want him to go to prison, but I want him to know what he did was wrong.'
Moore, of Kestrel Close, Swaffham, also admitted one count of driving with the presence of a controlled drug – cannabis – above the legal limit.
William Carter, defending, said Moore crashed just three days before his 18th birthday.
'He had never been in any trouble before and had only recently passed his test,' he said. 'He is genuinely remorseful as to what he has done.'
Recorder Guy Ayers told Moore he needed to realise he was responsible for his actions behind the wheel.
He was sentenced to eight months in a young offenders' institution, suspended for two years. He must also carry out 200 hours of unpaid work and must remain under curfew from 8pm to 6am every day for four months.