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Cyclist jailed after fatal collision with pedestrian in Hereford city centre

Man was riding a bike with no brakes in a pedestrian area

A cyclist involved in a fatal collision with a pedestrian in Hereford city centre has been jailed for 12 months after pleading guilty to causing bodily harm by wanton or furious driving. He had been riding a defective bike recovered from a scrap metal lorry in an area where cycling was prohibited when the incident took place.

The BBC reports that Darryl Gittoes, 21, hit Mary Evans, 73, on Commercial Street in Hereford city centre last July. Evans died in hospital nine days later.

The CPS said that Gittoes’ bike, recovered from a scrap metal lorry, had no brakes, a deflated rear tyre, a cracked front tyre and no bell.

A Traffic Regulation Order prohibits cycling on Commercial Street between 10.30am and 4.30pm and Gittoes had apparently been warned for cycling there on a number of occasions, including most recently on the day before the collision.

Emily Lenham, senior crown prosecutor from West Midlands CPS, said:

"Darryl Gittoes was fully aware that his bike was not in a roadworthy condition and he knew of the prohibitions which were in force along Commercial Street, however, on 30 July 2014 he disregarded the previous warning he had received from the police and rode his bicycle along this street and in doing so, he collided with Mary Evans, knocking her to the ground. Mrs Evans would later die due to the head injuries caused by the collision.”

Lenham said the case highlighted the dangers of riding a bike in a pedestrian area.

In a somewhat infamous incident from 2008, a cyclist killed a teenage girl after he collided with her as she walked along a pavement in Buckingham.

Jason Howard admitted, when interviewed, that he could have braked or stopped when he first became aware of Rhiannon Bennett and her six friends. With no traffic around, it was said that he could have avoided the group by picking a route anywhere across the five metre-wide road. Instead, he was said to have shouted “move because I’m not stopping” before veering onto the pavement where he collided with Bennett.

Chris Thompson, defending, asked one witness: "Could you see any reason why he shouted at you if you were on the path?" The youth replied: "Yes, he wanted to cut the corner and didn't want to stop."

Howard was convicted of dangerous cycling and fined £2,200. A CPS spokesperson explained: "It was decided that the charge of dangerous cycling was the appropriate charge and there was insufficient evidence for more serious charges, such as manslaughter, to be pursued."

More recently, a Blackpool cyclist was reported for summons for dangerous cycling following a pavement collision with a toddler. The incident was captured on home CCTV footage and led to a media backlash which saw the man involved labelled ‘the most callous cyclist in Britain’.

Alex has written for more cricket publications than the rest of the team combined. Despite the apparent evidence of this picture, he doesn't especially like cake.

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