Dorset

Bournemouth cyclist who injured girl on crossing is jailed

Philip Benwell
Image caption Philip Benwell said he deeply regretted what happened and deserved to be punished

A cyclist who admitted hitting a nine-year-old girl at a pedestrian crossing in Poole, leaving her critically ill, has been jailed for 12 months.

Philip Benwell, 38, of Crescent Road, Bournemouth, admitted causing grievous bodily harm to Leila Croftson in July.

At Bournemouth Crown Court, Benwell was told he committed "a selfish act" and took a serious risk to save a few seconds, shattering a family's life.

Benwell's lawyer said his client felt he deserved to be punished.

Leila was hit by Benwell's bike at the pedestrian crossing near Branksome Beach on 26 July.

She spent several days in intensive care.

Sentencing Benwell, Judge Johnson said he took into account Mr Benwell's remorse but could not ignore the facts.

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