Driver spared prison over Pompey fan’s death as police warn ‘few extra seconds’ could save a life

Simon Boyd outside Portsmouth Crown Court
Simon Boyd outside Portsmouth Crown Court

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A DRIVER convicted of causing a fatal crash has said he wishes he could take the place of the killed moped rider.

Simon Boyd, 39, was handed a nine-month jail term suspended for 18 months and banned from driving for two years with 120 hours of unpaid work yesterday at Portsmouth Crown Court.

The Mitsubishi Colas truck driven by Simon Boyd

The Mitsubishi Colas truck driven by Simon Boyd

He was found guilty at trial of causing the death of Gary Martin, 52, of Gosport, by careless driving in a crash in Eastern Road, Portsmouth, on October 26, 2016.

During the sentencing hearing it emerged a psychologist report had found Boyd had difficulty showing emotion but told a probation officer he was wracked with remorse over the death.

The court heard Boyd was ‘shocked by the collision, feels sorry for the victim and the victim’s family but he goes further – he’s aware they’re upset and angry and at times he wises he could take the place of the victim’.

Sentencing, judge Roger Hetherington said: ‘On October 26 last year in the early hours of the morning when it was still dark, you were driving a pick-up truck as part of your job emptying refuse bins around the city.

‘You emerged from a side road, Kirpal Road, turning right into Eastern Road, a main road.

‘You didn’t look or you failed to look with sufficient care because plainly you did not see the deceased, Gary Martin, who was travelling north on his motor scooter on his regular journey to work.

‘You pulled out directly into his path and he had no opportunity to avoid a heavy collision with the side of your vehicle, that collision causing him fatal injuries.’

He added: ‘There was some evidence that you pulled out in one movement.

‘That might not be the case but what is clear is that you didn’t stop for any length of time as you most implausibly suggested in your own evidence.’

The judge added: ‘Any reasonable driver looking properly to his right would have seen him.’

Colas worker Boyd, of Chaffinch Walk, Waterlooville, had been emptying dog excrement bins before the 6.20am crash.

Investigating officer PC Lucy Hawkins said: ‘This was a tragic incident that could have easily been avoided if Mr Boyd had taken the time to look properly before he pulled out.

‘Those few extra seconds to check that the road was clear would have prevented Mr Martin’s death and saved his family the heartache of losing him so suddenly.

‘I really hope this case highlights just how dangerous a few moments of inattention can be and reminds all roads users to take extra care because those few extra seconds could save a life.’

Mr Martin’s widow Angela previously said her life was ‘ruined’ by his death.