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25 July 2013, 17:31
A woman’s been convicted of hitting and killing a cyclist in Twyford – with police saying she may have been distracted by her sat nav.
Victoria McClure, aged 38, of Chilton Drive, Charvil, was found guilty by a jury at Reading Crown Court of causing death by dangerous driving.
On 16 September 2012, McClure hit dad-of-two Anthony Hilson, who was cycling on the A4 Bath Road at the time.
Baljit Ubhey from the Crown Prosecution Service said: “Mrs McClure failed to see Mr Hilson on the road.
“On the evidence presented at trial she had between 22 and 27 seconds in which she should have seen him cycling ahead of her and could have quite easily have steered around him.
“It may have been that her use of her satellite navigation system caused her to be distracted from driving.
“This was an avoidable distraction, which caused an avoidable death.
“It should act as a warning to others that any distraction while driving can have very serious consequences.
“Mrs McClure had pleaded guilty to causing death by careless driving, but this was not accepted by the prosecution team and a trial for causing death by dangerous driving was proceeded with.
“The jury returned a unanimous verdict of guilty for causing death by dangerous driving despite her denials.
“This was a very sad case, the consequences of which have had a terrible impact on many lives.
“The victim was a married man with two children. His family and friends have been devastated by his death.
“As a result of the hard work and diligence of the prosecution team, a just outcome has been achieved.
“We hope that the conviction will in some way help Mr Hilson’s family come to terms with this tragic event.
“No matter what the sentence is, we acknowledge that nothing can make up for the loss of Mr Hilson. Our thoughts are very much with his family and friends at this time.”
Sgt Jim Lovell of the Thames Valley Police Roads Policing unit added: “This has been an extremely emotional investigation for all those involved, in particular the family of Tony Hilson, who have lost their loved one.
“The case surrounds a collision between a car being driven by Victoria McClure and an experienced cyclist Mr Hilson, during which Mr Hilson tragically lost his life.
“Irrelevant of today’s outcome, Mrs Hilson and her family will continue to struggle to come to terms with their loss.
“There are increasing amounts of cyclists being killed or seriously injured on our roads and this case serves as a reminder to all motorists that extra care and vigilance needs to be taken around all vulnerable road users.
“On behalf of Thames Valley Police I would like to place on record my thanks to witnesses involved as well as the investigation team, but most of all our thoughts are with Mr Hilson’s family, who now need time to come to terms with their loss.”
McClure will be sentenced on August 30.