Crash tragedy: partner guilty

Brian Wilson, left, leaving court
Brian Wilson, left, leaving court

A man wept in court as he was given community service after admitting causing a motorcycle crash which killed his fiancée.

Brian Wilson pleaded guilty to causing death by careless driving and appeared at Scarborough Magistrates’ Court.

The scene of the crash

The scene of the crash

The court heard Wilson, of Clayton Le Moors, Lancashire, was riding his Yamaha along the A165 Coastal Road, near Burniston, on September 13.

His partner of 10 years, mother-of-two Samantha Higham was riding pillion.

Prosecutor Kathryn Reeve said that Wilson tried to overtake a slow-moving car but as he approached the blue Citroen Xsara Picasso, it turned right into The Barn cafe/restaurant and Mr Wilson hit the side of it.

Ms Higham, 44, from Accrington, was thrown clear of the bike and was pronounced dead at the scene. Wilson, 47, was also injured and has no memory of the crash.

Samantha Higham

Samantha Higham

Miss Reeve said that witnesses from two other cars gave statements saying the car had not been indicating when it turned right. However, a

police accident investigation report found that the indicator stalk was depressed in such a way as to suggest the driver had indicated.

There was no indication that Wilson was speeding.

Mitigating, Robin Phoenix said the incident was “tragic” for everyone.

The scene of the crash

The scene of the crash

He said: “Mr Wilson will live with this for the rest of his life. The pair had a happy life, they were due to be married.

“This was a momentary lapse of concentration and Mr Wilson has no recollection of it, perhaps that is a good thing.”

The court also heard that Ms Higham’s parents and two children had all written to the court asking for Wilson to be spared a prison sentence.

One of the children still lives with Wilson and Mr Phoenix said that Ms Higham’s relatives still treat his client as one of the family despite the tragic accident.

Wilson, who has no previous convictions and a clean driving licence, was sentenced to 150 hours of community service.

He was disqualified from driving for one year and must also pay £85 costs and a £60 surcharge.

As the sentence was handed down Wilson broke down in tears when he was told he would keep his liberty.