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Anonymous

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Steve Farrell  says:

Five cleared over ride-out deaths

Five motorcyclists controversially charged with causing the death by careless driving of a couple who collided with a car have been cleared. Paul Wheater, 29, Ian Townson, 31, Michael Paul Hannon, 26, David Hastings, 27, and Dax Lerman, 28, were cleared by a judge after the prosecution failed to produce sufficient evidence. They had been charged with causing the deaths by...

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  • Posted 3 years ago (06 January 2012 15:18)

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James600zx

Joined:

Sep 07

Posts: 2838

James600zx says:

Billysollocks,

You appear to be arguing both that there was group responsibility and that we need to take responsibility for our own actions. I'd agree with the latter but you can't have it both ways.  I don't know whether a chase was what caused this accident but that's the supposition. As Kawasakifreak1 wisely says, "-the rider who made the decision which lead to his death did so through his own free will & was not induced." If you're riding in a group and you're really struggling to keep up you should stop trying, especially if you have a pillion. Blameless accident or foolish chase, in my view the group can't be blamed.

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Cyclonite

Joined:

Oct 10

Posts: 306

Cyclonite says:

group riding

umm... if i speed its my fault..not some other biker im chasing i thought everyone thought like that...dont you?

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Piglet2010

Joined:

Oct 11

Posts: 2544

Piglet2010 says:

Wrong Image

The whole “biker as 1% MC club member” image is coming back to bite all moto riders in the arse. Why else would there be so much actual and proposed legislation restricting motorcycling, when the real carnage of innocents is caused by drivers (and I use the term loosely) of automobiles and personal use trucks.

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greenturbobob

Joined:

Nov 05

Posts: 126

The Legal Stuff

Section 1 of the road traffic act 1988: "A person commits the offence of Causing Death by Dangerous Driving if they unlawfully cause the death of another whilst driving a mechanically propelled vehicle dangerously on a road or a public place". 

In addition the driving may only need be a CONTRIBUTORY factor and not the sole cause of the death. What this means is if you are riding in a group and are perceived to be driving in a dangerous manner by other witnesses (which lets face it most car drivers think we do) and someone gets killed YOU could be held to had CONTRIBUTED to their death by your riding even though you didn't directly cause their death and as such could be prosecuted under the current law. The law is an arse but there it is, I would guess that's why these people ended up in court because they MAY have contributed to the unfortunate death of two others by riding as a group and possibly at speed. CPS will only charge if they think they have a good case and will win. This is because they have targets to hit and wont take a shoddy case to court and risk losing, it looks bad on them. The Police are only doing their job given the information they have and are EXPECTED to do their job properly. I find amusing that people see fit to comment on this case when they know nothing about it.

[This Reply has been modified by the Author]

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greenturbobob

Joined:

Nov 05

Posts: 126

another example!

Another example, which I think is important to explain because most people don't really understand the law, and that includes me to an some extent. But if you are driving down the road minding your own business but at slightly over the speed limit and someone pulls out from a side road, you hit them and they die, even though they made the mistake by pulling out, YOU could be charged with causing death by dangerous driving and sent to prison, because YOU would have contributed to their death by committing an offence, in this case speeding. Very unfair, but this is the case. For those of you who have had your bike taken away after a serious accident even though you weren't directly involved this is most probably why, they are looking for evidence that you might be involved or CONTRIBUTED to the other persons death. 

This is why i wont ride in groups or if i do i am choosy about who i ride with, because if someone gets killed (God forbid) I could be held liable and sent to prison. Here endth the lesson!

Edited:  Just for info, it costs on average around £1,000,000 to investigate EACH death on the UK roads.  Sounds unbelievable, but its true and that why the Government hit the road users hard, because it costs them a lot of money when someone dies. 

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Bob_1

Joined:

Feb 05

Posts: 223

Bob_1 says:

Heavy Handed?

I'm pleased for the five defendants and I'm sure their friends who tragically lost their lives would be too. There's nothing wrong with this case being heard in a court of law, I have no argument with that but the dawn raids carried out by the police were totally over the top.

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greenturbobob

Joined:

Nov 05

Posts: 126

Dawn Raids

Just regarding the peoples comments about "Dawn Raids". I understand why people seem to think they are over the top but consider the following: In November sunrise is around 7:00am, not nice but not its the middle of the night.

If you do a "Raid" at this time it makes life easier for everyone, because they are most probably in the house. This means their doors don't need to get put in, because they can open them.
Similarly the garage doors where the bikes are kept can be unlocked and the bikes transported with some degree of care as opposed to dragging them out and onto a truck with out the owner present. 
An early "Raid" means for the working people they can inform their bosses early or get there other half to do it and tell them what they like for not turning up, but its better than getting arrested at work.
 But most importantly by an early arrest of 5 persons means they can hopefully all be dealt with by the end of the day and released on bail as opposed to being kept in overnight because you arrested them later in the day.  You have to arrest all 5 together for evidential reasons.  
You are not likely going to get an interview team for each person and it could take some time also there could re-interviews depending on what is said during interview. Whilst they are never going to thank you for it. A dawn Raid is the best time of day for everyone.
Edited: Just for the record i am also sad about the two deaths but also i am pleased all 5 have been released without conviction. In my posts I am just trying to get across the reality of the situation and how things can be misundertsood .

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GrazzerFazer

Joined:

Feb 11

Posts: 47

GrazzerFazer says:

Rideouts

Rideouts in groups can be dangerous  with the close proximity of other but done properly it can be great fun, the key thing to remember is never to ride beyond your limits, nevermind what anyone else is doing its your responsibility to ride safely both for you and other road users.

I can count numerous times when I have been riding and another biker has flown past me at ridiculous speeds and my response is let them go, its their life but sometimes it isn't just theirs.

As for all other road users they should be forced to ride a motorcycle for 6 months so they know how bikes work and how their actions can put some poor biker as risk

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markinnormy

Joined:

Jan 09

Posts: 28

markinnormy says:

What is also galling about this whole sad incident, is that the police invited the local BBC news team along to the dawn raid to film it, whilst the chief constable gave a very biased version of events. It was then shown around the whole of our region at tea time, where it was the headline story. 

Unfortunately the bikers aquittal on all charges, seems to have gone unreported on the same news.

Go figure :(

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Bob_1

Joined:

Feb 05

Posts: 223

Bob_1 says:

To Greenturbobob

I appreciated the logistics of when the best time for a raid might be but my point is that a raid of any kind is simply not neccessary in this type of investigation. I'm sure the five friends would have cooperated with the police who didn't need to go down the route of kicking anyone's front door in. It really is an example of muddle-headed and yobbish policing which ultimately does more harm than good.

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