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Beckampton 'utter maniac' driver jailed for dangerous driving after causing smash in fog

A motorist left a woman seriously injured after smashing into her car as he overtook at speed in fog at a spot where he had caused another head on smash years earlier.

A judge told Thomas Todd of Beckhampton that he was driving like and 'utter maniac' when he lost control of his Honda Civic as he passed a line of traffic in a 'pea souper'.

And he said it beggars belief that the smash took place at almost exactly the same spot as the incident that led to him being convicted of dangerous driving in 2009.

As a result of his latest horror smash, which was caught on another driver's dash cam, a mother of three was hospitalised for two months after suffering a stroke.

Now the 34-year-old, who also has previous for drink driving, has been jailed for three years and banned from the road for another six after his release.

Tim Hills, prosecuting, told Swindon Crown Court how the incident happened on the A361 near the Salthrop turning in the dark at about 7pm on Friday December 16.

He said Richard Hill, director of a Cirencester air conditioning company, and his wife Judi had set off from their home near Calne for the work Christmas party.

As they took the road through Avebury he said they considered turning back because of the fog, but decided to press on.

Coming the other way a line of three cars were travelling out of Wroughton at about 40mph, with big gaps between them because of the poor visibility.

All three motorists later told the police they were amazed when Todd's Honda overtook at what they thought was between 60mph and 80mph.

As he passed the front of the trio he narrowly avoided a head on smash with a bus coming the other way, causing him to lose control.

After mounting the verge to the left his car careered sideways across the carriageway piling into the Hills' Mazda 3, sending both vehicles into a field.

As well as the stroke, which left her paralysed on the left side for a while, Mrs Hill had four broken bones in her neck, as well as one in her heel and sternum.

Meanwhile her husband, who had to quit his job to care for his wife, suffered a broken wrist and post traumatic stress disorder.

The court was told that while Mrs Hill was still suffering ten months on she had been told she ought to make a full recovery.

Todd, of Beckhampton Road, Beckhampton, pleaded guilty to causing serious injury by dangerous driving.

Alistair Hegarty, defending, said that his client was driving home from work in Swindon on a road he uses daily.

He said that he was full of remorse for what he had done and had to live with the guilt of what he had done to the victims.

Jailing him Judge Robert Pawson "No explanation has been given how you drove like this: like an utter maniac.

"It is a matter of luck not judgement that you didn't kill someone that day.

"You have dangerous driving from 2009 which I am told, and I didn't know until I came to court this afternoon and it beggars belief, that was for almost identical behaviour on the same piece of road."


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  • Silbury-Sunset---10-06-08-----07
  • Marlborough-2013-04-18 St Peters
  • IMG 8472
  • Town-Hall-2011-05-03 08-
  • IMG 9097