A man has been jailed for 12 years for causing the death of a man in Liverpool city centre by dangerous driving in October last year.
At around 1am on Saturday, 7 October 2023, police spotted an Audi TT being driven at high speed into the city centre along Great Howard Street.
A Roads Policing patrol travelling in the opposite direction turned to attempt to stop and speak to the driver, but the driver failed to stop and drove out of sight.
Being driven at excessive speed, the driver lost control of the vehicle on the Strand near Brunswick Street and collided with a taxi.
This impact pushed the taxi onto the footpath and it struck a man who was on a bench.
The 44-year-old pedestrian suffered serious injuries and was taken to hospital in a critical condition.
The driver of the Audi immediately ran from the scene, leaving his female passenger in the vehicle.
An investigation was launched by the Matrix Serious Collision Investigation Unit and urgent enquiries began to identify, locate and arrest the suspect.
During the early hours of the following morning, police arrested Connor Mears, 28 years, of no fixed abode.
He was charged with causing serious injury by dangerous driving, but the pedestrian sadly died 11 days later and the charge was changed to causing death by dangerous driving.
The driver appeared at Liverpool Crown Court on 3 January and was sentenced to 12 years for causing death by dangerous driving. He was also disqualified from driving for 16 years and will have to take an extended driving test.
Detective Sergeant Kurt Timpson, Lead Investigating Officer from Merseyside Police Serious Collision Investigation Unit, said, “Our thoughts remain very much with the family of the man who died in this crash.
“It has been a very difficult period for them as their lives have been changed forever by this incident, and they have been supported by a specially trained Family Liaison Officer throughout the case.
“I welcome the sentence today and I would like to thank members of the public who rushed to help the man that morning.
“The speed and manner of driving by Mears was grossly excessive and inappropriate and has been found in open court to be dangerous. His driving was prolonged and he had driven from Southport to Liverpool in a time which showed his speed was vastly in excess of the speed limit.”
Detective Sergeant Timpson added, “Excess speed and driving whilst impaired through drink and drugs devastates lives and causes unimaginable harm to people who become involved in road crashes. Not one of us would want to be involved in such incidents and we must change driving behaviour to reduce that harm.
“Merseyside Police will not tolerate drivers who deliberately ignore the rules of the road, and we are committed to the prevention of serious injury and road death, to work towards Vision Zero – our strategy focused on driving down the amount of road traffic collisions in our regions and to lower the number of people killed and seriously injured on our streets.
“However, this is something that we must all do in partnership. Communities can also take a stand and help us to make the roads safer. We know how much you want to help us, so that we can ensure roads and shared spaces are used responsibly and that people abide by the laws we enforce.
“The sentence issued at Liverpool Crown Court by Judge Flewitt KC shows that the courts will deal robustly with offenders and acts as a stark message to anyone whose selfish and reckless actions end in such tragedy.”
Image: Connor Mears/Merseyside Police