Driver who caused carer's death on Northamptonshire road while distracted is jailed

A woman who ploughed into and killed an oncoming driver in Northamptonshire while distracted in her car has been jailed for six months.

Saturday, 18th June 2016, 5:30 am
Jenny Tilley was killed in a car crash on December 5, 2014.

Michelle Frewin, aged 28, was driving her Peugeot 206 on the A510 Thrapston Road towards Finedon, on December 5, 2014, when her vehicle crossed the white line in the middle of the road and collided with a Suzuki car.

The collision led to the death of Jenny Tilley, a carer from Brigstock.

Frewin had initially denied she was using her mobile phone at the time her vehicle veered of course, saying she only had it on the passenger seat because she was listening to he sat nav.

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But a jury found the self-employed 28-year-old, of Monkston Park, Milton Keynes, guilty following a trial in Milton Keynes after experts found the crash “could only be due to driver error”.

Sentencing her yesterday, Judge Adrienne Lucking QC, said she could not suspend the six-month sentence.

She said: “You accept a sense of responsibility, what you do not accept and continue to deny is that you were responsible for that collision.”

She added: “Had you admitted guilt I may have considered suspending the sentence, but looking at the nature of driving overall and what happened to the other vehicle, I cannot suspend this sentence.”

Frewin will serve half her sentence in prison and the other half on licence.

She will also be suspended form driving for a year after her release.

In mitigation Alex Young called for the sentence to be suspended as he said the judge could not be sure Frewin was distracted for more than a “moment”.

He said, though Frewin never accepted a criminal responsibility for Mrs Tilly’s death she did feel a sense of remorse about her involvement in it.

“In terms of impact on her she feels a genuine sense of responsibility, that is something that will stay with her.”

Frewin was also injured in the collision in December, 2014, crushing a vertebrae and fracturing a collarbone.

But David Outterside, prosecuting, read out a statement from Mrs Tilley’s son, Harry, in court prior to the summing up.

“This has left me feeling lost in myself, very lonely and depressed,” the statement read.

“There is not a day that goes by when I don’t think about her.”