05:11PM, Friday 29 November 2019
Reading Crown Court
A driver has been found guilty of causing serious injury by dangerous driving in a Maidenhead collision where two police officers were seriously harmed.
Hayden Brown, 25, was found guilty of three counts of causing serious injury by dangerous driving at Reading Crown Court this afternoon (Friday)a fter the jury deliberated for one hour and 24 minutes.
PC Tom Dorman, now 27, lost the lower part of his left leg after a silver Ford Focus collided with him and PC Wai Man Lam in Norden Road at 5.42am on September 2, 2018.
Anilah ‘Annie’ Butt, who was in the car, broke 24 bones when she was crushed underneath the vehicle, which ended up on its side with the driver’s door facing upwards.
As well as Brown and Ms Butt, two other people were in the car - Brown’s twin brother Stuart Brown and friend Charlie Keeley. Hayden Brown had claimed he we was not at the wheel when the collision took place.
Summarising the prosecution’s case, barrister Michael Roques described how Brown had run away from the scene of the crash and hidden in a bush when chased by a police officer.
He said: “Not only did the defendant run but he didn’t stop and see if Annie Butt was ok, notwithstanding the fact that we know she was screaming.
“He didn’t even to stop to check to see if he brother was dead or dying.
“Of course he would have been shocked but the fact that you are in shock doesn’t mean that you run away from the scene and it does not mean that you go and hide.
After the incident, the court heard how Brown fled the scene and did not return. Eighty minutes after the crash, a police officer searching for Brown found him nearby, but had to give chase, finding him attempting to hide in a bush.
The jury heard how after he was arrested, Brown was recorded admitting he was the driver, but under cross examination he claimed he was being ‘sarcastic’.
Before the incident, Brown and a group of friends had been drinking alcohol and taking cocaine, cannabis and nitrous oxide balloons in Maidenhead before setting off in the car, the court heard.
When giving evidence yesterday, Brown, who is a technician for highways and road safety, claimed that it was the first time he had taken any of these drugs.
Representing Brown, defence barrister Alan Walker stated that Ms Butt was at the wheel when the crash took place, rather than his client.
Ms Butt admitted that she had driven for part of the journey, despite not having a full drivers licence and having taken cocaine, cannabis and nitrous oxide balloons, but insisted that Brown, a track driving enthusiast, took over the controls before the crash.
Summing up the defence’s case, Mr Walker said: “Annie Butt suffered serious injuries but that’s not a reason to treat her with any less scrutiny.
“Running away from the car may well be something Hayden Brown regrets, it might even be regarded as thoroughly reprehensible, but they based it on the assumption that he was in a normal frame of mind.
“When you are in shock you don’t think like you would normally.”
Brown will be remanded in custody ahead of his sentencing, which is set for Monday, December 9.
In a statement released after the sentencing, Inspector Andy Storey of the Joint Operations Roads Policing Unit, said:
"Brown was driving at excessive speed under the influence of alcohol.
"His reckless actions of getting behind the wheel whilst under the influence, driving at speed and ultimately losing complete control of the vehicle had a devastating impact on three people and it is extremely lucky that no-one died.
"The injuries that PC Dorman, PC Lam and the member of public received physically and psychologically will have a lasting impact.
"It is clear in this case that Brown was in no state to be driving a car.
"Over and over we see the destruction that driving whilst under the influence of alcohol or drugs can have on innocent people's lives.
"I would hope that this conviction will serve as a reminder that drinking and driving is not worth the risk."
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