Worthing death driver jailed

9 April 2016, 08:07 | Updated: 9 April 2016, 08:21

A teenage driver has been sentenced to five years behind bars for causing a head-on crash which killed one of his passengers.

The court heard Arthur Berry, 19, from Stable Lane, Findon, lost control of his Seat on the A24 in Capel between the Clark's Green roundabout and the Kingsfold railway bridge in April 2015. He hit a Ford Fiesta travelling in the opposite direction.

As a result of the collision, one of his back-seat passengers, Charlotte Lajoie, 17, from Epsom died.

A second female passenger, who was also 17-years-old at the time and from Epsom, suffered serious life changing injuries.

The driver of the Ford Fiesta, a 28-year-old from the Worthing area, was seriously injured as was Berry himself

Acting DI Gary Wright of the Surrey Police Collision Investigation Unit said:

"The sentencing reflects the severity of this crime and demonstrates how excessive speed and lack of concentration during a few moments of recklessness can lead to a tragedy which will be a lifetime sentence for the victim's family and for those left with long-term injuries.

"Surrey Police is committed to tackling issues surrounding driving offences and I hope this result shows other young drivers how important it is that they exercise due responsibility for themselves and any passengers in their vehicles. 

"They are in charge of a potentially lethal weapon and must treat it with caution. The outcome that day killed a young girl who had her future ahead of her and needlessly altered lives for a number of people."