A Lincolnshire motorist has been jailed for two years after he struck a cyclist, leaving him seriously injured, then fled the scene and tried to conceal the fact that he had been drunk at the time of the collision by continuing to drink.
Robert Foster, aged 49 and from Stamford, pleaded guilty at Lincoln Crown Court to driving a motor vehicle while over the legal limit for alcohol, causing serious injury through dangerous driving and failure to stop, reports Peterborough Today. He was also banned from driving for four years.
He had fled the scene of the crash, which happened at around 8.30pm on the evening of 10 September 2016, in his BMW and returned home. Police subsequently searched the area for a car showing signs of damage and discovered the vehicle outside his house, where Foster admitted he was the driver involved.
The victim, a sergeant with Leicestershire Police, sustained multiple injuries including a broken leg and wrist which have left him unable to carry out front-line duties.
Following the court case, he said: “As a police officer it is important to me that the judicial system is seen to be effective, and in this case it was.
“I would like to thank the local police in Stamford for their tenacity and quick detective work without which Foster could have been undetected until he had sobered up.
“The four-year driving ban keeps a dangerous individual with an alcohol problem off the roads,” he added.
Sarah Capes, from Lincolnshire Police’s Serious Collision Investigation Team, said: “Officers successfully located this offender in the surrounding area of Stamford within hours of him leaving the scene of a serious RTC.
“This is an excellent example of the proactive policing we follow. The victim in this case was seriously injured as a result of this incident, and has thanked officers for their help and support in this investigation. We hope that he can now move forward knowing that the offender has had to face the consequences of his actions.”
She added: “This offender was careless, dangerous and tried to cover up his intoxication by drinking after the collision, and we hope that this sentence can be seen as a deterrent for the future.”
One of the officers who discovered the vehicle, PC Stephen Robinson, said: “When we located the car suspected to be involved in the RTC, the offender immediately identified himself as the driver of the vehicle.
“Myself and PC Morris found an empty bottle of wine and a glass tumbler at the address, which were both seized, and we immediately recognized this offender was intoxicated.
“While this was happening, PC Spencer-Kidd remained with the victim to provide reassurance, until he was taken to hospital.
“At the station, Foster blew 104mg in a breath test, which is three times over the limit. It was then calculated that the offender would have been just over double the limit at the time of the incident.
“This offender was arrested, and we hope the victim can now move forward with his life.”
Sentencing Foster, Judge Simon Hirst said: “You left him on the floor, you left part of your vehicle on the floor and you drove off.
“There is no doubt you were substantially over the proscribed limit at the time of the collision.
“There is no doubt in my judgement you, knowing you had hit a cyclist, tried to avoid responsibility, first by leaving the scene and then by drinking alcohol to cover up your earlier drinking.”
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.