Drive for Justice: Five killer motorists from South Yorkshire walk free from court

Sheffield Crown Court
Sheffield Crown Court

Five people convicted of causing death by dangerous driving in South Yorkshire walked free from court, new figures have revealed.

Of the 51 people to be convicted of the crime in the county between 2005 and 2015, only 14 got a sentence of over five years and not one person was sent to prison for more than ten years.

The maximum sentence available to judges is currently 14 years.

Of those convicted in South Yorkshire and not sent to jail, one person was fined, three received a community sentence requiring them to do unpaid work and one got a suspended sentence.

The figures have been revealed as part of the Star’s Drive for Justice campaign, calling for tougher sentencing powers to be made available to judges by Parliament.

In the county over the past decade, 14 people have received sentenced of three years or less for killing someone through dangerous driving.

A further 17 offenders were given sentences of between three to five years.

The Ministry of Justice has confirmed it is due to launch a consultation on dangerous driving penalties by the end of this year.

Speculation is rife that the long-awaited review may consider the possibility of increasing the maximum sentence to 20 years.

Although no one has actually received the maximum of 14 years since it was extended from 10 years to 14 years in 2004, campaigners believe increasing the maximum would be a good move as it will increase sentences overall.

Duncan Dollimore, senior road safety and legal campaigner for Cycling UK, said: “At the moment, the maximum penalty for death by dangerous driving is 14 years.

“The judge will never impose that. There is not a sentence that ever gets the maximum. It has to be the worst possible case.

“They are talking about possibly having the maximum sentence extended to 20 years.

“This would not mean someone would get the 20 years but the sentences themselves would go up and be higher.”

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