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Plus six months ban for man who swerved at group "for fun"...

A van driver who laughed as he deliberately drove at a group of cyclists has been jailed for six months.

According to a report from the Daily PostJoel Reece Morris drove his white Transit van on the wrong side of the road at the 20-rider group “for fun”, swerving back to his side of the road moments before a collision.

Many of the riders fell off their bikes as the group stopped, believing they were going to be hit.

Morris, 25, of Connah’s Quay, Flintshire, North Wales was jailed for six months. He was also banned from driving for six months and will have to take an extended driving test before being allowed to drive again.

The incident happened at 10.45am on Sunday November 17, 2013. The cyclists from Ellesmere Port were riding two abreast along the B5125 at Northop Hall, Flintshire.

Witnesses described Morris laughing as he drove at the group.

Afterwards he stopped and as riders approached him to get his registration number he reversed with his tyres screeching as his passenger gave them a V sign.

Morris had previously claimed he had swerved to avoid something in the road, and had not deliberately driven at the riders, but at Mold Crown Court on Wednesday he accepted the prosecution case in full.

David Mainstone, prosecuting, said that a female cyclist at the head of the group swerved to the left and told how she would have been hit if she had fallen to the right.

Morris had two previous convictions for drink driving and leaving the scene of an accident.

Jayne La Grua, mitigating, said Morris appreciated the seriousness of what he had done. He had sought the help of a driving instructor with his impulsive actions behind the wheel.

He was a cockler and the loss of his driving licence meant the loss of his job. “This was a phenomenally stupid and dangerous thing to do,” she said.

Judge Niclas Parry told Morris: “This was an inexplicable piece of dangerous driving. For some reason, known only to you, you decided to goad and, more seriously, intimidate a group of cyclists doing no more than what has become a very common, enjoyable and worthwhile past time of riding in a group on a Sunday morning.

“For fun, you deliberately drove at them to alarm them and to make them lose control. You drove intentionally at that group.”

Only the alertness of the cyclists prevented any major injuries, said the judge. The evasive action riders were forced to take resulted in some of them colliding with each other, with some falling off and sustaining minor injuries and damage to their bikes.

The judge mentioned recent incidents in which cyclists had been seriously injured or killed and said: “There is a duty on every motorist to respect the safety of cyclists.”

Follow-up: Ride leader Terry Hughes has given a detailed account of what happened.

Our official grumpy Northerner, John has been riding bikes for over 30 years since discovering as an uncoordinated teen that a sport could be fun if it didn't require you to catch a ball or get in the way of a hulking prop forward.

Road touring was followed by mountain biking and a career racing in the mud that was as brief as it was unsuccessful.

Somewhere along the line came the discovery that he could string a few words together, followed by the even more remarkable discovery that people were mug enough to pay for this rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work. He's pretty certain he's worked for even more bike publications than Mat Brett.

The inevitable 30-something MAMIL transition saw him shift to skinny tyres and these days he lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.

66 comments

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lookmanohands [119 posts] 2 years ago
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 41

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georgee [171 posts] 2 years ago
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Chapeaux for the Jail term but a 6 month ban? his drink driving and leaving scenes of accidents were justification of banning him for life, yet alone this inciddent

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notfastenough [3715 posts] 2 years ago
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Finally, a sentence that isn't suspended! Realistically, he'll serve 3 months, and as the ban will run concurrently (believe this is correct?), will only be banned for a further 3 after that. However, not only has he lost his job, he'll probably lose his home in that 6 months unless he's still at his parents, and his car insurance will go through the roof. I wouldn't expect him to be insured to drive any employers' vehicles again. He's ruined his future, and for what? What a tool.

Good also that m'lud acknowledged "cyclists doing no more than what has become a very common, enjoyable and worthwhile past time of riding in a group on a Sunday morning"

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notfastenough [3715 posts] 2 years ago
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Finally, a sentence that isn't suspended! Realistically, he'll serve 3 months, and as the ban will run concurrently (believe this is correct?), will only be banned for a further 3 after that. However, not only has he lost his job, he'll probably lose his home in that 6 months unless he's still at his parents, and his car insurance will go through the roof. I wouldn't expect him to be insured to drive any employers' vehicles again. He's ruined his future, and for what? What a tool.

Good also that m'lud acknowledged "cyclists doing no more than what has become a very common, enjoyable and worthwhile past time of riding in a group on a Sunday morning"

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JeevesBath [180 posts] 2 years ago
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So he will be banned from driving during the six months he is in prison? That's going to hit hard then....

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colinth [191 posts] 2 years ago
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Sounds like a decent Judge for a change, well done m'lud.

As for the driver, what an absolute endbell, going to prison with all the associated problems for his future and for what ? Seriously hope he continues to suffer for a long time, someone could have been killed

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usedtobefaster [182 posts] 2 years ago
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A k**b head driver actually going to see the inside of a prison cell for a change. More of this is needed to act as a deterrent.

his car insurance will go through the roof

You're assuming he be a good boy in future and try to get insurance, analysis would suggest he's probably the sort of brainless moron that wouldn't bother with it.

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allez neg [497 posts] 2 years ago
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Let's hope he isn't raped morning noon and night every single day he's inside, hey?

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jollygoodvelo [1540 posts] 2 years ago
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Good! More of this please.

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FluffyKittenofT... [1352 posts] 2 years ago
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JeevesBath wrote:

So he will be banned from driving during the six months he is in prison? That's going to hit hard then....

Did I not read somewhere (quite possibly on here) that that used to be how it worked (idiotic though it is) but common-sense finally kicked in and now it starts after release? Maybe I imagined that?

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ridemybike [10 posts] 2 years ago
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"He was a cockler and the loss of his driving licence meant the loss of his job"

so now he's just a cock then ...

6 months driving ban for dangerous driving - really he should be banned for 6 years - this wasn't inattention, this was a deliberate act of intimidation which could've led to the death of the cyclists.
I'd bet it wasn't the first time he's done it either.

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mrmo [2093 posts] 2 years ago
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sorry, I am confused, driving at a group and swerving at the last minute, gets you a 6month sentence, but driving over the top of a cyclist gets you a suspended 6 month sentence.

....

er

....

Sorry, is this saying that if you intend to punish cyclists, you should kill them????????????????????

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Paul_C [481 posts] 2 years ago
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does his driving ban start on the day of release? If not then it's a joke...

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jason.timothy.jones [294 posts] 2 years ago
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to be fair, its more than drivers have got that have killed cyclist

its not right, but better than some cases recently

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nod [68 posts] 2 years ago
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allez neg wrote:

Let's hope he isn't raped morning noon and night every single day he's inside, hey?

This is a country that hates cyclists, so he'll be given hi-5s and his choice of pretty boys.

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workhard [397 posts] 2 years ago
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clearly thought Top Gear is a documentary series on advanced driving techniques.

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alexholt3 [53 posts] 2 years ago
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6 month ban.... While he's in prison and can't drive anyway. Well done.

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Simon E [2852 posts] 2 years ago
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JeevesBath wrote:

So he will be banned from driving during the six months he is in prison? That's going to hit hard then....

Hopefully not but, either way, just six months off the road for this incident as well as other serious offences? Pathetic, and falls far short of being effective.

As for his laughhable claim of "seeking help" I'd suggest that he needs a psychiatrist, not a driving instructor (some of whom don't even know how to drive properly around cyclists themselves).

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Simon E [2852 posts] 2 years ago
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double post. oops.

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pepita1 [176 posts] 2 years ago
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Something similar happened to me on last Sunday's 56miler. I was less than a mile from home, descending a road in which I can reach speed of 30+, has multiple parked cars but is wide enough for two way traffic. On this day, I was going slower as I'd had an issue with my rear brake earlier in the ride and as a precaution decided that slower was better just in case I had to brake suddenly. (I am, after all, a defensive rider/driver.) And what happens, a young woman who was ascending the hill in her car, looks straight at me and I'm looking at her, and she suddenly crosses the white line without any indication of her action, in order to park on the opposite side of the road! She clearly can see and judge my speed and you can bet, if I had been a car, she wouldn't have made that maneuver. Of course, I think she's coming straight at me, I have to slam me anchors down (thank goodness my on the go brake adjustment I performed earlier worked) my rear wheel slides out and up (I'm so glad I wasn't going normal 30mph here). I'm screaming all kinds of choice curse words that I can think of and I seriously contemplate fully unclipping and walking a ways up the hill to her car so I can ask her, "What the "f*ck?" But, I'm very rightly angry and experiencing some severe back spasms so decide to go home. When I arrived, my poor patient husband got an earful of what happened. I seriously considered changing my shoes and jumping in my car to go see if the motorist was still parked up, but I'm the one who probably would get in trouble with the police as I have no evidence.

The road.cc story is a positive result and gives me hope that there is still some justice left in the world. The last remark by the judge, for me, was spot on: “There is a duty on every motorist to respect the safety of cyclists.”

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pmr [198 posts] 2 years ago
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 41 A minor victory for bike riders and common sense

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pmr [198 posts] 2 years ago
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 41 A minor victory for bike riders and common sense

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nuclear coffee [217 posts] 2 years ago
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Six month's *might* have been fair. But with previous convictions?

It's ludicrous to suppose this man could ever be safe. When he kills, the judge who let him drive again should be held liable.

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bici1977 [42 posts] 2 years ago
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Finally a sentence that is appropriate. However, that puts a very different light at other sentences that had human death involved and got suspended. Also, after a driving record like that, there should be no way back behind a steering wheel of any sort of motorized transport, period!

Overall, finally, a step into the right direction!

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Bikebikebike [252 posts] 2 years ago
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Six months off the road? What a joke. Does anyone feel safe with this guy on the road? What do you have to do to get a lifetime driving ban?

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colinth [191 posts] 2 years ago
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All driving bans start on release from custody. Dangerous driving is supposed to be a minimum 12 month ban so not sure how he got away with 6. Still a result that he got jail time.

If he'd have said he was blinded by the sun and mown the lot of them down he'd probably be at home now

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md6 [181 posts] 2 years ago
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I wonder how long he will be out before he gets a conviction for driving without insurance/whilst disqualified... based on his history of ignoring road rules he should never be allowed to drive again. But thankfully a Judge has seen fit to punsh for the crime. Hopefully this is the start of something

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twinklydave [27 posts] 2 years ago
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Quote:

Sorry, is this saying that if you intend to punish cyclists, you should kill them????????????????????

Well, there'd be no witnesses if he did, so his story of having to swerve to avoid something couldn't be argued against...so yes, basically!

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Sub5orange [97 posts] 2 years ago
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Would not be surprised if this guy will be back in the news after his ban, with a tragic outcome. So he will have to pass an extensive driving test again? Does that include a test to see whether he is actually mentally fit to drive a car? Probably not. Should get forced to ride a bike daily on a busy road for the couple of months or weeks that he will actually be in jail. Maybe that would get him the maturity that he has been lacking up to now.

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cidermart [492 posts] 2 years ago
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Let's hope that he doesn't try and learn how to brush his teeth with a shotgun  3 Arsehole!

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