'Young life full of promise' snuffed out by drunk driver

THE father of a Scottish student killed by a drunk driver in the United States has said no sentence could ever make up for the loss of his daughter and her friend, who also died in the horrific crash.

Emily Lewis, 21, was in her fourth year of a business management degree course at Aberdeen's Robert Gordon University when she took a break from her studies to spend the summer working at a children's camp in New York State.

Miss Lewis - whose father Paul is a lawyer in Aberdeen and her mother Marysia a sheriff at Peterhead - died in hospital from multiple injuries in June after being hit by a 4x4 driven by a drunken driver. Fellow camp worker Dominic Hartley, 21, from Bredon in Gloucestershire, was also killed.

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Driver Peter Goldblatt is facing a sentence of up to 25 years imprisonment after he was convicted yesterday of a series of charges, including aggravated vehicular homicide, following a trial at the Warren County Court in New York State.

But Miss Lewis' heartbroken father said that no sentence the court could impose would compensate for the "needless" loss of two young lives.

He said: "Two lives have been needlessly taken. Our daughter Emily and her friend Dominic Hartley were vibrant and bubbly, full of life, eager to expand their horizons, keen to learn more and generally just good people.

"What a waste of two young lives, full of promise. No sentence can ever make up for their loss. However, what can never be taken away are the many happy memories which both families, as well as friends and colleagues, have to comfort us in the times ahead."

Miss Lewis, from Northcote Avenue, Aberdeen, had gone to the US to work in the office at Camp Echo Lake in Warrensburg, New York State, only three weeks before she was killed. She and Mr Hartley had been with fellow workers for a night out in Warrensburg when the car driven by Goldblatt veered off the road and ploughed into them.

Miss Lewis and Mr Hartley were in a group of seven people from the camp standing at the roadside when they were struck.

Another Briton, Christopher Jones, 18, was injured in the collision and required hospital treatment.

The court was told that Goldblatt, 40, who worked at his parents' golf course, had 110 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood when he was tested. The legal limit in the United States is 80 microgrammes. He will be sentenced in February.