Page last updated at 16:22 GMT, Wednesday, 16 July 2008 17:22 UK

Driver fined over pavement death

A man who knocked down and killed a woman as he reversed his 4x4 vehicle along a pavement, has been cleared of causing death by dangerous driving.

Janet Austin, 57, was hurt in the collision in Bourne, Lincolnshire, on 2 March 2007 and died later in hospital.

Michael Crofts, 61, of Cherry Holt Road, Bourne, was convicted of a lesser charge of careless driving at Lincoln Crown Court.

He was fined 1,800 and banned from driving for one year.

'Heartfelt' regret

Crofts, who owns a vehicle-hire company, was ordered to pay 1,200 in court costs.

Lincoln Crown Court heard he failed to see Mrs Austin as he reversed along Abbey Road, at about 5mph, because of the high rear window and tinted glass of his Mitsubishi Warrior.

He told the court he had reversed along the same pavement up to 20 times a week without any problems as he always used his mirrors.

Crofts said he would forever be haunted by the tragedy.

In sentencing, Mr Justice Treacy, said he accepted his "heartfelt" regret but added that Mrs Austin had lost her life "needlessly".

Woman in fatal collision is named
05 Mar 07 |  Lincolnshire
Woman killed after 4X4 collision
03 Mar 07 |  Lincolnshire

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