Jury finds woman guilty of causing fatal crash that killed Northamptonshire carer
A woman has been found guilty of causing a head-on car crash that killed a 56-year-old carer from Northamptonshire.
Michelle Frewin, aged 28, was driving her Peugeot 206 on the A510 Thrapston Road, Finedon, on December 5, 2014 when her vehicle crossed the white line in the middle of the road and collided with a Suzuki car, travelling in the opposite direction, being driven by Jenny Tilley.
Miss Tilley, a carer from Brigstock, died at the scene of the crash after her car was pushed into a ditch.
After a three-day trial at Northampton Crown Court, a jury yesterday (Tuesday) found Frewin, of Monkston Park, Milton Keynes, guilty of causing death by careless or inconsiderate driving. She will be sentenced later this month.
Frewin had said in evidence that her car had started “sliding” shortly before the crash and then bounced of the kerb and veered across the road.
However, the court heard analysis of the road surface revealed there were no potential skid hazards such as oil, ice or mud.
Both vehicle were also checked for defects and none were found.
James Thomas, prosecuting, told the jury the crash had happened on a straight length of road, 83 metres after a gentle left-hand bend.
Mr Thomas said: “The prosecution say there were no environmental or vehicle failures identified that caused the crash.
“It could only be due to driver error that caused her to lose control of her vehicle and move across the solid white line in the middle of the road, resulting in the collision.
“It may be because she was distracted and there was an element of panic and oversteering caused her to lose control, something similar to falling asleep.
The court heard that when she was interviewed by police, Frewin said she had been following the audible instructions on a sat nav programme on her mobile phone, which was on the passenger seat.
Phone records revealed she had not made or received any calls or text messages in the minutes before the crash.
Speaking safter the sentence, Mrs Tilley’s daughter Emma Browne said it had been a long 18 months waiting for the case to come to court.
She said: “My mother was the most wonderful person. I think everybody is just sad that she was taken from us so suddenly and she will not be able to see her grandchildren grow up and she will not get to see my brother Harry get married.”
Chris Elliott, Mrs Tilley’s partner said: “I would like to thank all the emergency services and people who stopped to help Jenny at the scene of the crash.”