Police blast 'lies' of jailed Doncaster driver who smashed into high speed train
Police have blasted a jailed Doncaster driver who smashed his car into a high speed train in an incident which a judge said could have caused a ‘catastrophe.’
Michael Rochford was sentenced to ten months behind bars and banned from driving for four years on his release after he ploughed into a fast-moving LNER Azuma in Rossington after downing beers and then climbing behind the wheel of his Range Rover.
The 27-year-old fled the scene and later told police his car had been stolen. The Network Rail signal worker crashed his car into a stretch of track he had worked on for his job.
Now South Yorkshire Police have welcomed Rochford’s jailing and have criticised him for trying to pervert the course of justice.
PC Martyn Micklethwaite, from South Yorkshire Police’s Roads Policing Group, said: “This case highlights the consequences of driving at excess speed. This collision could have ended with catastrophic results.
“The sentence handed down by Sheffield Crown Court shows how serious these offences have been taken. resulting in a significant prison sentence and a driving ban that will see him off the road for four years.
“Our investigation showed the extent Rochford went to in the lies he told on the night to police which resulted in him being charged with perverting the course of justice.”
Rochford of Heatherbank Crescent, pleaded guilty to perverting the course of justice, failing to stop following a road traffic collision and dangerous driving following the incident at Rossington Level Crossing at around 8pm on June 13.
A number of passengers on the train suffered whiplash injuries while the train suffered extensive damage with the incident costing the rail network £345,000. Rochford was later sacked by Network Rail.
It has also emerged that disgraced Rochford was one of two Doncaster Rovers fans filmed mocking a severely disabled Rotherham United fan in a match at the latter’s New York Stadium last month.
The clip, which sparked outrage among supporters from both clubs, shows two men laughing, jeering and mimicking the ‘stimming’ movements of an autistic Millers supporter.
In the footage, he can be seen rocking backwards and forwards, grabbing his crotch and and jeering before exiting the ground.
Judge Jeremy Richardson QC said Rochford had ‘taken leave of his senses’ and could have caused a ‘catastrophe.’