Beds, Herts & Bucks

Suicidal driver who killed woman fails to lift ban

A man who intended to kill himself in a high speed crash that killed a 29-year-old mother on the A1 in 2004, has failed to get a driving ban overturned.

Charles Brown survived and served six years in jail for manslaughter.

The 26-year-old was released on licence in January this year but he is still banned from driving until May 2013.

Brown, from Langford in Bedfordshire, told Luton Crown Court he had become educated in prison but could not get a job without a driving licence.

He relied on public transport which was unreliable in the village where he lived.

Judge Andrew Bright QC said while he had some sympathy with Brown he could not concede to his application as the driving ban was part of his punishment and it had already been reduced from 12 years to eight.

Brown, from Station Road, Langford, said: "Every day I am remorseful for what I did and I wish I could change it.

"I got educated and qualified in prison but I am struggling to find work without a driving licence."

Family aware of application

Judge Bright said: "A disqualification is meant to be part of the punishment.

"It is fair to say that he spent his time in custody productively and did his utmost to make himself employable on his release."

On 5 December 2004, Brown, 19 at the time, drove his Vectra car straight at oncoming traffic on the A1 at high speed while in a "state of emotional turmoil".

"It was his intention to kill himself," said the judge.

Car passenger Sarah Webb, a charity worker from Letchworth in Hertfordshire, was killed and her husband injured. They had a two-year-old daughter.

Brown survived and pleaded guilty to Mrs Webb's manslaughter.

He was sentenced to 10 years custody and given a 12-year driving ban reduced to eight years by the Court of Appeal.

Prosecutor Sally Mealing-McLeod said Mrs Webb's family were aware of the application Brown was making.

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