South East Wales

119mph drink driver jailed after PCSO Alwyn Pritchard died

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionAlwyn Pritchard served in the Army before joining Gwent Police

A drunk man who was driving his car at 119mph when he crashed into and killed an off-duty police community support officer (PCSO) has been jailed.

Alwyn Pritchard, 53, was riding his motorbike when he was struck by an Audi driven by Paul Wilson, who then fled the scene, Cardiff Crown Court heard.

Wilson, 38, of Rassau, Blaenau Gwent, pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving and other charges.

He was jailed for four-and-a-half years and disqualified from driving.

Gareth James, prosecuting, told the court that when Mr Pritchard was hit by Wilson's car he was "catapulted 131.8 metres from the point of impact. He died from multiple injuries."

Wilson, an experienced HGV driver, admitted drinking "a couple of pints of Peroni and two bottles of Corona" but claimed he had been driving at 70mph on the Heads of the Valleys road near Abergavenny.

Image copyright Wales News Service
Image caption Paul Wilson ran away from the scene after hitting Alwyn Pritchard

Mr Pritchard's daughter Carly said in a statement to the court: "I will never be the same, my family will never be the same.

"He was a good, loyal, trustworthy man to his family, community and his job as a PCSO with Gwent Police."

She added: "The hardest part about accepting dad's death is the knowledge that it was avoidable.

"Dad is dead because a choice was made - a choice that Paul Wilson made to drive dangerously at an excessive speed whilst intoxicated and also leaving the scene.

"The consequences of his actions have forever changed my life as well as my families. How could he leave our father at the road side to die."

Wilson also admitted to failing to surrender and driving with excess alcohol.

David Webster, defending, said: "Wilson can't undo what has happened. He acknowledges that he must be punished."

Image copyright Wales News Service
Image caption Alwyn Pritchard worked with the Usk Neighbourhood Policing Team for six years

Judge Tom Crowther QC said: "You had a passenger with you, it seems highly likely you were trying to impress your passenger."

He added: "Mr Pritchard was a cherished husband and father."

After the hearing, Insp Martyn Smith said: "The loss of Alwyn Pritchard is deeply felt within the community - among his friends and colleagues - but moreover by his family.

"They have said although they're fractured by grief and pain, they're still held together by love."

He had worked with the Usk Neighbourhood Policing Team for six years.

Gwent Police Chief Constable Jeff Farrar described him as "a committed, kind and conscientious community support officer".

Related Topics