Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Barnsley crash mum freed over 'impact' on children

Upper Sheffield Road Image copyright Google
Image caption The crash happened at the junction of Knowle Road and Upper Sheffield Road in Barnsley

A mother who was jailed for causing the death of a motorcyclist by careless driving has been released because of the "harmful impact" on her children.

Amanda Fitzpatrick, 30, hit Clive Burdett, 49, as she turned out of a road in Barnsley on 15 November 2017.

She then "panicked" and drove over Mr Burdett, trapping him under her car and dragging him 65ft (20m) down a road.

Judges at the Court of Appeal ruled a nine month prison sentence imposed last year could be suspended.

They described the mother of two's reaction after hitting Mr Burdett, who worked at Barnsley Hospital as a payroll administrator, as "extremely poor".

However, they said her personal circumstances, coupled with the negative effect her continued incarceration would have on her children, justified a suspended sentence.

Mrs Justice McGowan said: "There is a realistic, indeed strong, prospect of rehabilitation, there are very strong factors in personal mitigation and sending into custody, on an immediate basis, this young woman did have a harmful impact upon her children and possibly her immediate family."

Fitzpatrick, of Templing Close, Barnsley, was jailed in December after pleading guilty to the offence.

Passing sentence at the time, Judge Michael Slater said: "I accept without hesitation from what I have read and witnessed in court that you are genuinely remorseful for what happened that day and that it has not left your mind since, even to the extent of making you ill.

"However, having regard to all the circumstances of this case I am regretfully of the view that it is so serious that only an immediate term of imprisonment is appropriate."

The Court of Appeal upheld Fitzpatrick's three-year driving ban and said she will have to take her test again before she is allowed back behind the wheel of a car.

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