Luke Headech jailed for hit-and-run cyclist death

Luke Headech arriving at court
Image caption The court heard Luke Headech tried to escape from police after the crash

A man has been jailed for seven years after causing the death by dangerous driving of a cyclist on New Year's Day.

Luke Headech, 24, from Bexhill in East Sussex had previously admitted killing Jamie Murray, 23, but denied being over the drink-drive limit.

But Lewes Crown Court Judge Guy Anthony concluded Headech was over the limit, though he said there was no evidence for allegations he had taken cocaine.

The judge told Headech he was responsible for Jamie Murray's death.

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Image caption Jamie Murray was killed in the early hours of New Year's Day

Mr Murray, 23, of The Marina in St Leonards, died at the scene of the crash on the A259 Grand Parade at 04:00 GMT on 1 January.

Headech's defence was that Mr Murray was partly responsible because he had crossed into the car's path.

Scaffolder Mr Murray was not wearing a helmet, reflective clothing or using lights.

The court heard Headach drove off after the accident, which knocked Mr Murray nearly 50m (54 yds) along the road, and tried to escape from police but was caught two hours later.

Sussex Police said Headech initially tried to blame someone else for Mr Murray's death, saying that the car had been stolen from him. As a result, an innocent man was arrested, but later released.

Headech admitted causing death by dangerous driving on Friday.

A so-called Newton hearing was held on Wednesday to consider disputed facts of his mitigation.

Headach also admitted failing to stop at the scene of a crash and attempting to pervert the course of justice.

After sentencing, Mr Murray's mother Angela Miles said: "Justice seems to have been done, but Jamie's life was worth more than seven years.

"The fact is that Luke Headech can come out in less than four years and live a normal life, which Jamie cannot."

Image caption The crash happened near the Royal Victoria Hotel in St Leonards on New Year's Day

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