Uninsured driver jailed after killing newlywed mother

Glasgow High Court, where the case was heard.
Glasgow High Court, where the case was heard.
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An uninsured driver who killed a newlywed mother-of-two in a head-on crash after overtaking on a blind bend has been jailed for more than four years.

Thomas Canning, 22, from Clynder, Dunbartonshire, admitted causing the death of 32-year-old Lisa Fleming on the B833 Rosneath Road, Rosneath, on 31 July 2017 by dangerous driving.

The High Court in Glasgow heard that Mrs Fleming, who was married in May 2017, had been shopping in Dumbarton and had texted her husband at 4:50pm to say she was heading home to Rosneath. At 6:16pm she was pronounced death at the scene by paramedics.

Judge Lord Mulholland yesterday jailed Canning, who had only obtained a driving licence 22 months before the crash, for four and a half years and disqualified him from driving for eight years.

The judge told Canning: “You drove your vehicle too fast and you overtook when it was unsafe to do so at a point where you were unable to see oncoming traffic.

“This lethal combination turned your vehicle in to a weapon which you lost control of.

“She had no time to react, your driving was appalling and to compound the tragedy, you were uninsured which indicates to me a casual attitude to the road traffic laws.”

He said he had read the “heartbreaking” victim impact statements from Mrs Fleming’s family and said: “You have visited upon them a life sentence of grief and loss.”

The court heard that Mrs Fleming had a young daughter with her husband and a son from a previous relationship.

Prosecutor Iain McSporran told the court that Canning, a chef, was driving a Ford Mondeo bought a week before and was uninsured. He had purchased temporary insurance which expired on 28 July 2017.

Mr McSporran said: “At approximately 5:50pm the accused was involved in a head-on collision with the Vauxhall Corsa driven by Mrs Fleming.

“The driver in front of Mr Canning observed his Ford Mondeo drive alongside and begin to overtake on the approach to a blind bend.

“Mr Canning by his plea accepts he carried out the overtaking when it was unsafe to do so and when he was unable to see oncoming traffic.”

Canning lost control of the car as he pulled back in after overtaking. The car went on to the wrong side of the road and collided with Mrs Fleming’s car which was forced backwards into trees by the impact.

She was found dead in her car after suffering head and neck injuries.

His vehicle came to rest on its roof. A 16-year-old boy who was in Canning’s car sustained a broken ankle and collarbone.