Essex

Police back 'Cassie's Law' campaign over unfit drivers

Victim Cassie McCord
Image caption Cassie McCord was studying AS levels at college in Colchester

A woman whose daughter was killed by an 87-year-old motorist in a crash has gained the support of Essex Police in her campaign over unfit drivers.

Cassie McCord, 16, was pinned against a wall when Colin Horsfall's car mounted a pavement at speed in Colchester.

Mr Horsfall had been warned three days earlier by police not to drive.

Essex Police said it fully supported Jackie McCord's "Cassie's Law" campaign to give officers the power to immediately suspend licences.

Officers had spent two hours trying to persuade Mr Horsfall not to drive his automatic Vauxhall Astra again after he was involved in a minor incident, failed an eye test and had to be driven home.

'Completely frustrated'

Police said they were powerless to do anything else, and three days later on 7 February he drove erratically and at speed along Head Street.

He mounted the pavement and trapped Cassie between his car and a wall.

Cassie, who had been walking to sixth-form college with a friend, died in hospital the next day.

Mr Horsfall died of his injuries in May last year.

Assistant Chief Constable Sue Harrison said: "We feel as a police force completely frustrated that we didn't have enough power to save that life."

More than 15,000 people have signed an onlinepetition, started by Cassie's friend Charlotte Mitchell, but 100,000 signatures are needed before a debate will be held at the House of Commons.

Ch Insp Richard Phillibrown said: "What we would like is the ability to suspend a licence, not remove it, pending a review of the facts by a court.

"I feel passionately that this will improve road safety across the country and I would only advocate that everyone looks at the petition, considers it and signs it."

Essex Police said its senior officers had already raised the issue at a national level.

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