‘Wall of silence’ stopping police finding those responsible for crash which killed Northampton woman

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A husband is calling for someone to break a wall of silence which is stopping police finding those responsible for the crash which killed his wife.

John Smith heard the heartbreaking news on the eve of the second anniversary of wife Joanna’s death that there was not enough evidence to prove who slashed the car tyres which caused the fatal crash.

Joanna Smith

Joanna Smith

Joanna, 32, died in the accident on the A45 near Earls Barton on the morning of April 10, 2012.

Her tyres had been deliberately damaged near her home in Grange Park, Northampton, along with three other vehicles, before she set off on her usual journey to work.

Police said the damaged tyres had failed, which caused the crash, but without more evidence, those to blame for her manslaughter may never be brought to justice.

Husband John, a former sports reporter for the Northamptonshire Telegraph in Kettering, said: “After two years, the hope of finding those responsible was fading, but you never say never.

“To hear the news was disappointing and it came at a difficult time, but I think the police have done all they can.

“It’s going to come down to someone saying something. Someone knows who did this, who is responsible, but they are fearful of reprisals.

“I don’t think they realise what they have done to me and the family.”

After two years of numerous police appeals and extensive investigations, officers told Mr Smith that while the tyres were damaged deliberately, they cannot say with which weapon or by who.

It is believed Joanna’s car was randomly targeted, but Mr Smith fears a wall of silence has gone up so anyone who knows about what happened is staying tight-lipped for fear of retribution or being implicated in the crime.

He said: “Why anyone would do anything like this is beyond me, but it has massively spiralled out of control and now they are scared of being caught up in it. But, as a friend said to me, gangs disband and people fall out so it may come out in a couple of years.

“Just to know that someone has been found responsible for it would be some sort of closure.”

Despite moving to Loughborough after his wife’s death because he couldn’t bear to continue living in their flat in Northampton, Mr Smith is still fighting for justice for his wife. He said: “Please come forward and please say something if you know anything because there’s grieving parents and a twin sister in another country who just want this to be over.”