Sussex grandfather crash appeal

A week after Michael Baker from Littlehampton was killed on the A20 in Kent police are back at the scene trying to find more witnesses.

They have renewed their appeals for information about the death of Mr Baker, 47, on the A20 near the Swanley Interchange in Kent. He was a passenger in a recovery truck that collided with a lorry when rocks were thrown at the windscreen.

Four children have been arrested on suspicion of manslaughter and released on bail.

A mobile police station has been set up near the crash site to give people the chance to talk to officers.

DCI Adrian Futers is leading the investigation

Mr Baker died in hospital in London last Saturday from injuries sustained during the collision.  A second man, the driver of the recovery truck, remains in hospital with serious injuries.

Officers believe a group of young people were standing on the grass bank at the side of the road (on the wooded side of the A20, not the town side) at the time of the crash. As the lorry heading towards London drove past the children the driver realised something had hit the windscreen and he pulled over to the side of the road. While the lorry was stationary the recovery truck collided with it.

Sevenoaks District Commander, Chief Inspector Adrian Futers said: "This weekend a family have lost a loved one, this is not the time for people to withhold information out of some sort of misguided loyalty.

"This group of young people were standing at a spot that we frequently send patrols to because youngsters hang around near the road and there have been previous reports of things being thrown at vehicles. 

"We have spoken or will be speaking to the people who we know go to this location but we want information about everyone who hangs around there and specifically who was there on Saturday morning.  I would like parents and carers to ask youngsters where they were on Saturday and come forward if they have information.

"It goes without saying that no-one should ever think it is a joke to distract drivers or throw anything at vehicles, sadly one family in particular understand this only too well."

Prior to the fatal collision the car Mr Baker was travelling in was involved in a collision as it drove onto the M25 at junction 4 in the direction of the Dartford Tunnel (anti-clockwise).  The car was recovered by the recovery truck he was travelling in.

Police are also investigating a report of criminal damage to the windscreen of a white Mercedes Sprinter van travelling along the same section of the A20, going towards the M25, around 10.30am.  The driver of the van reported that the glass was smashed by a piece of stone larger than a tennis ball.

A mobile police station will be located at the corner of Laburnum Avenue and Lynden Way on St Mary’s estate between 9am – 9.30pm for the early part of this week at least.  A team of officers working on the investigation will also be making house to house inquiries will be in the area.  Anyone with information can speak to an officer at the mobile station or alternatively people can contact the incident room for this investigation on 01622 654853.  Callers can also ring Kent Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.  Callers to Crimestoppers do not have to leave their name. Information can also be emailed to appeals.westkent@kent.pnn.police.uk

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