York & North Yorkshire

Film crew driver who nearly killed friend spared jail

A film crew member who almost killed a friend while driving a lorry after a drunken staff party has been given an 18-month suspended jail sentence.

Adam Vines jumped on the back of the vehicle being driven by Thomas Prothero, 30, after the drinking session in Redmire, North Yorkshire.

But he fell off and fractured his skull and had to be induced into a coma.

Prothero told police he had drunk 10 vodka and cokes and two "Jagerbombs" before taking to the wheel.

Teesside Crown Court heard that on 9 March last year Prothero had driven the gully sucker lorry, which is used for emptying toilets, back to the men's accommodation at Bolton Castle where they were working on a film.

Found bleeding in road

Prothero, a driver for Set Location Services, was asked by Mr Vines to stop in a country lane so he could relieve himself.

But the court heard that instead of getting back in the cab Mr Vines jumped on the back of the lorry.

Prothero, from Meldreth in Cambridgeshire, drove off slowly and soon after stopped to persuade his friend to return to the cab but found he was not there.

A police officer later discovered Mr Vines lying bleeding in the road, the court heard.

He went on to make a full recovery.

Prothero initially lied about his involvement, telling police he had got a lift back to their accommodation and went to look for his friend when he failed to return.

Judge Howard Crowson said that because of Prothero's good character, his guilty plea and genuine remorse, the jail sentence could be suspended.

Prothero, who admitted dangerous driving and perverting the course of justice, was also ordered to carry out 150 hours of unpaid work and banned from driving for a year.

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