A woman was jailed for six years this week, for her part in an accident that involved her using not one but two mobile phones whilst at the wheel.
Peterborough Crown Court heard how Marina Usaceva ploughed into another vehicle, killing its driver, shortly after texting and receiving calls on her pair of mobiles.
Prosecutor Georgina Gibbs claims Usaceva had been travelling at 70mph in a 60mph zone. Witnesses suggest she had braked suddenly in front of a speed camera and ran into the rear of a Peugeot 206 being driven by Sukhdeep Singh Johal, causing him fatal injuries. He died at the scene.
Latvian-born Usaceva, of Peterborough, had previously been given points on her license for using a mobile phone while driving in 2009 and 2012. In this latest, tragic incident, she was discovered to have been using Sony and Samsung phones in her car while driving in Wisbech, Cambridgshire.
She had sent and received texts on the Sony 15 minutes before the crash, and made and received calls on the Samsung in the lead-up to the Crash. She admitted causing death by dangerous driving.
Judge Sean Enright told Usaceva: “If you were not sending texts at the time, then you were fiddling with your phone and that is what caused this collision. In my opinion there is not a scrap of remorse.
“Mobile phone use while driving is a plague on society”, he added, jailing her for six years and banning her from driving for eight years.
Inspector Bob Turner, who was involved with the police investigation, said after the case: “I have never seen anything like it before – it was crass stupidity.”
Police have recently been told to start seizing mobile devices after road traffic accidents, no matter how minor, in order to ascertain whether those involved were calling or texting at the time. The guidelines issued by the Association of Chief Police Officers are a response to more than 500 people killed or seriously injured every year in the UK by drivers using mobile phones at the wheel.