The man who hit and killed cycle campaigner John Radford in a road rage incident has been jailed for four years and eight months after admitting causing death by dangerous driving, reports The Huddersfield Examiner. Michael Gledhill was convicted of causing serious injury by dangerous driving in 2013, but when Radford later died of his injuries, fresh charges were brought.
Radford was chairman of Huddersfield CTC and a Yorkshire regional representative on the CTC’s national council. He is credited with spearheading the CTC's Road Justice campaign in West Yorkshire by meeting with his PCC, Mark Burns-Williamson, to deliver the Road Justice report.
On July 31, 2013, he became involved in an altercation with Gledhill while cycling on the A616 Huddersfield Road in New Mill. Gledhill was accused of succumbing to “road rage” and following a collision, Radford fell into the road, sustaining brain damage.
A jury at Leeds Crown Court subsequently found Gledhill guilty of causing serious injury through dangerous driving, but a month later, Radford died of his injuries. A decision was then made to pursue the more serious charge of causing death by dangerous driving.
The judge said there was evidence both men had exchanged abuse as they continued moving along the road for some metres. “One independent observer driving in the opposite direction described what he saw as ‘cat and mouse’ between the two of you,” he told Gledhill before concluding that the incident had been ‘motivated by rage’.
“What you did was deliberate. You drove your car towards him. Whether to frighten him or not, your temper caused you to act in a deliberate manner and the consequences were catastrophic.
“Mrs Radford has lost her husband, her best friend for many years, his daughters have lost their father and grandchildren their grandfather, all this after having spent the period of some 16 months watching they man they knew so full of life in a persistent vegetative state, unable to communicate with them. Their lives were turned upside down by your moment of rage.”
Gledhill, who was also disqualified from driving for four years, was at the time about to leave the army as a Lance Corporal in the 2nd Battalion Yorkshire Regiment. Nicholas Johnson, representing him, told the court that he was likely to have suffered post-traumatic stress disorder from service in Afghanistan which made him more impatient and angry on is return to the UK. He had been having counselling for anger management prior to the incident and has now also been diagnosed as suffering severe depression.