Accidental death verdicts on friends killed as they tested out high-performance car

Verdicts of accidental death were recorded at the inquest
Verdicts of accidental death were recorded at the inquest

Portsmouth coastguard called to reports of a body near Chichester

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TWO young men died in a crash near Fareham as they tested out a high performance sports car bought just days earlier, a coroner heard today.

The Mitsubishi LancerEvo VII hit a tree and rolled on to its roof after it clipped a brick culvert at around 11pm on Monday, December 2 last year.

Thomas Emery, 24, had been driving the grey modified car, which he had bought just three days previously.

Mr Emery, of Moorgreen Road, West End, Southampton, died of multiple injuries.

His passenger, Dean Palling, 23, from Botley, known as Little Dean, died from a fractured skull.

Both men died at the scene of the crash, on the B2177 Southwick Road, one mile from Southwick.

Their deaths were the subject of an inquest today at Southampton Coroner’s Court.

Evidence at the hearing was given from PC Tracey Saunders, collision investigator, who said that due to the extent of the damage it was impossible to tell how fast they had been travelling along the 60 mph road.

Mrs Saunders said that the car had been extensively modified and despite Mr Emery being an experienced driver, it would have taken ‘sometime to get used to’ the car.

Witness statements were also read out, which said they had heard the loud roar of the Mitsubishi’s exhaust as if it was being tested out.

Central Hampshire coroner Graham Short recorded a verdict of accidental death.

He said: ‘It is apparent to all involved that the machine was extremely powerful and clearly very dangerous to drive.’