Road rage murder: Lorry driver Mark Slater gets life sentence
- 30 July 2014
- From the section England
A lorry driver who drove his 17-tonne truck over another motorist's head has been jailed for life.
Mark Slater, 47, from Oldham, who was convicted on Tuesday, was told he would serve at least 15 years for murdering Trevor Allen, 56, from Salford.
Slater will be banned from driving for five years on his release from jail.
A jury at Chester Crown Court convicted him after three and a half hours of deliberations at the end of a week-long trial.
Mr Allen's body was found near his van on the A57 Manchester Road, Rixton, near Warrington, on 15 February.
Slater admitted causing his death but told the jury he did not see him.
Widower Mr Allen, a father of three and grandfather of four, was also a truck driver and HGV instructor.
His family believe he may have spotted Slater using his phone while driving, which he admitted, shortly before the attack.
He may have indicated to Slater to get off the phone, sparking the fatal confrontation, his family said.
Slater, of Hillside Avenue, Oldham, said he was involved in an "overtaking session" with Mr Allen, who had thrown coins at the window of his cab and said he did not see Mr Allen standing in front of his lorry.
Ian Unsworth QC, prosecuting, said Mr Allen was wearing a high visibility jacket and it was "obvious" he was standing in the road.
The jury was told of two previous road rage attacks involving Slater.
One motorist described him as a "raging bull" on the M62 in January last year and told how the lorry driver had threatened to kill him.
An incident in Oldham on 17 December was recorded on a "dash cam" and showed Slater leaving his lorry cab on two occasions, running at a car and kicking and punching the vehicle while trying to force the driver's door open.