Driver jailed over Sunderland boy's death

Steven Atkinson
Image caption Steven was riding his bike at the time of the collision

A driver has been jailed after admitting causing the death of a 12-year-old Sunderland boy who had overcome cancer.

Steven Atkinson, of Fordham Road, died in hospital after he was hit by a car in October last year.

Newcastle Crown Court heard Ross Telfer, 21, of Chester-le-Street, was travelling at 50mph in a 30mph zone when Steven was hit.

He was sentenced to 16 months in prison, with 8 months suspended.

Steven, a keen Sunderland fan, had successfully battled leukaemia.

The court was told the youngster was riding his bike on Chester Road in the Grindon area of Sunderland when he was struck by a black Mini driven by Telfer.

Steven, who was a pupil of Grindon Broadway school, was born with a cleft palate, jaw defect and curvature of the spine and at 18 months old, was diagnosed with leukaemia. He battled the disease for three years.

He was described as an inspiration to everyone who knew him after recovering from the disease.

Telfer, of Chrichton Avenue in Chester-le-Street, who admitted causing death by careless driving, was also disqualified from driving for three years.

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