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Driver who deliberately crashed into cyclist admits murder

Sam Spaven due to be sentenced later today

A motorist who deliberately drove into a cyclist in Nottinghamshire has pleaded guilty to murder at Nottingham Crown Court and must serve at least 25 years behind bars. 26-year-old Sam Spaven drove his Audi into 44-year-old Richard Pencott as he was riding along Blyth Road in Harworth on June 24.

The BBC reports that Spaven became angry after learning that his former partner Amy Sherwood, with whom he has a son, had been seeing Pencott, a former colleague of his.

Michael Evans, prosecuting, said Spaven had visited Sherwood and threatened to kill both her and Pencott, telling her: "I'm going to chew your face off."

The next day, after again visiting her and being told to leave, he posted on Facebook: "Richard Pencott and Amy Sherwood have broken me and my family apart and my boy." Evans said Spaven then drove to "exact his revenge."

He mounted the pavement in Blyth Road and drove into Pencott who was cycling home from work. The collision is said to have resulted in the bike landing on the other side of a 10-foot fence. Pencott died at the scene.

Spaven was initially arrested over a suspected hit and run, but was later charged with murder.

Pencott’s family released a statement via Nottinghamshire police, which said:

“We are deeply shocked and devastated at Richard’s recent death. Richard was a much loved son, father and brother. His loss to us is immeasurable. “We would ask for privacy to grieve for Richard at this difficult time.”

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