Lancashire TelegraphDisappointment at 'lenient' sentence for Pendle hit-and-run driver (From Lancashire Telegraph)

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Disappointment at 'lenient' sentence for Pendle hit-and-run driver

Lancashire Telegraph: VICTIM: Michael Isherwood VICTIM: Michael Isherwood

Family and friends of a Pendle cyclist killed in a hit-and-run have spoken of their ‘strong disappointment’ after the driver who knocked him down walked free from court.

Delivery driver Andrew Edwards, 47, of Hyde, failed to stop after his van veered into the cycle lane in Kelbrook Road, Salterforth, and hit Michael Isherwood, catapulting the 36-year-old around 50 feet.

A hearing at Burnley Crown Court yesterday was told the defendant stopped 200 metres up the road to inspect damage to his vehicle before continuing with his deliveries.

He also saw the aftermath of the accident as he drove back along the road, but again failed to stop.

In court his barrister said he had veered into the cycle lane after momentarily blacking out at the wheel.

At the time he was under stress because his partner Elaine Tierney was recovering from surgery, and he had been on the road for several hours, the court heard.

He pleaded guilty to causing death by careless driving and failing to stop after an accident.

Judge Andrew Woolman sentenced him to 12 months in prison, suspended for 18 months, banned him from driving for a year and ordered to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work.

Speaking after the hearing Ken Isherwood, Michael’s father, said: “We are disappointed that he didn’t actually go down for it.

“Being given a suspended sentence, in a way, is like getting away with it, but perhaps it doesn't help that the prisons are so full.

“He did not stop at the scene and even came back down the road when Michael was dying.

“He exploited his partner’s illness. Of course we feel sorry for her, but her illness should not have been part of the case.”

Ivy Isherwood, Michael’s mother, said: “His life will get back to normal, but ours never will.

“He should have done the right thing and admitted it in the beginning.”

Mr Isherwood, who lived with his parents in Meadow Way, Barnoldswick, worked as a boatmaster at Foulridge Canal Cruises.

Martin Cleaver, who was his boss, said: “I do not think it really sets a good example to have somebody who has done a hit-and-run and then later on drove past the accident again being let off.

“But the facts of the case were presented in a way that there was some doubt that he could have fallen asleep and not seen the accident, and the judge took that view.”

Pendle MP Andrew Stephenson believes the ‘lenient’ sentence sent out the wrong message.

He said: “I’m very disappointed to hear the sentence that has been handed out.

“Judges need to send out a strong message in cases like this.

"This sort of driving is very bad and needs to be punished full stop, but to leave the scene is particularly bad.

"It’s completely shocking for everyone.

"I feel the sentence here is far too lenient.”

Comments (16)

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12:43pm Wed 6 Jul 11

disgusted tunbridge wells says...

I told you he would walk, complete waste of time and money
I told you he would walk, complete waste of time and money disgusted tunbridge wells
  • Score: 0

12:58pm Wed 6 Jul 11

useyourhead says...

I'm disappointed that the LT splits one story into several, on a regular basis. very annoying for the reader.
I'm disappointed that the LT splits one story into several, on a regular basis. very annoying for the reader. useyourhead
  • Score: 0

1:03pm Wed 6 Jul 11

Seneca says...

scrap causing death by careless driving and replace it with manslaughter. He Should be sat in a prison cell now.
.
Death should not be a motoring offence.
scrap causing death by careless driving and replace it with manslaughter. He Should be sat in a prison cell now. . Death should not be a motoring offence. Seneca
  • Score: 0

1:27pm Wed 6 Jul 11

burner says...

Equate this to the guy who was fined £175 recently for not picking up dog poo !!! Which is the more serious offence?
Equate this to the guy who was fined £175 recently for not picking up dog poo !!! Which is the more serious offence? burner
  • Score: 0

1:40pm Wed 6 Jul 11

happycyclist says...

Why is there a second report on this?
Why is there a second report on this? happycyclist
  • Score: 0

1:44pm Wed 6 Jul 11

happycyclist says...

Lift your arm up in front of you. Now move it in a arc downwards for a quarter of a turn.

THAT's how easy it is to kill a cyclist when you're driving a vehicle.
Lift your arm up in front of you. Now move it in a arc downwards for a quarter of a turn. THAT's how easy it is to kill a cyclist when you're driving a vehicle. happycyclist
  • Score: 0

4:44pm Wed 6 Jul 11

ramjam says...

Huh????? this guy didnt stop at the scene but to check his vans damage 200 metres up the road and gets a suspended sentence, what an absolute and utter joke of a sentence. He must be thinking he is the luckiest man alive at the moment.
Huh????? this guy didnt stop at the scene but to check his vans damage 200 metres up the road and gets a suspended sentence, what an absolute and utter joke of a sentence. He must be thinking he is the luckiest man alive at the moment. ramjam
  • Score: 0

6:30pm Wed 6 Jul 11

Pendle Witch says...

What a complete and utter disgrace. Blacked out at the wheel my arse. Suffering from stress my arse. Not paying attention more like. I wonder if he had a mobile with him. He made the concious decision to drive away from the accident, stop and check his vehicle and then turn around and drive past the scene of his atrocity. The law is a joke! I would hope his girl friend dumps him for using her as an excuse.
What a complete and utter disgrace. Blacked out at the wheel my arse. Suffering from stress my arse. Not paying attention more like. I wonder if he had a mobile with him. He made the concious decision to drive away from the accident, stop and check his vehicle and then turn around and drive past the scene of his atrocity. The law is a joke! I would hope his girl friend dumps him for using her as an excuse. Pendle Witch
  • Score: 0

8:51pm Wed 6 Jul 11

jessjade says...

complete joke .the justice system is a joke
complete joke .the justice system is a joke jessjade
  • Score: 0

10:44pm Wed 6 Jul 11

moggy669 says...

Absolutely disgusting.
Absolutely disgusting. moggy669
  • Score: 0

4:31am Thu 7 Jul 11

globetrot says...

Another innocent victim and family let down by the UK justice system. Its sickening.
Well Mr MP, Andrew Stephenson,do something usefull, take it to the house of Lords and get the law changed. How many times do we read about hit and run incidents ending in tragedy, leaving a trail of distruction, that a lifetime isnt long enough to heal. while the perpertratuer gets another chance.
Another innocent victim and family let down by the UK justice system. Its sickening. Well Mr MP, Andrew Stephenson,do something usefull, take it to the house of Lords and get the law changed. How many times do we read about hit and run incidents ending in tragedy, leaving a trail of distruction, that a lifetime isnt long enough to heal. while the perpertratuer gets another chance. globetrot
  • Score: 0

9:29am Thu 7 Jul 11

Chris P Bacon says...

This is a truly sickening example of the old old story. It's a case of 'walk down the street and bash someone with an iron bar and you go to prison, take the precaution of attaching the iron bar to a motor vehicle and you can get away with it.'

This sends out the wrong message entirely. This makes cyclists more vulnerable when the perp knows (s)he'll get away with it, an example I've just witnessed about ten minutes ago on the Padiham bypass.
This is a truly sickening example of the old old story. It's a case of 'walk down the street and bash someone with an iron bar and you go to prison, take the precaution of attaching the iron bar to a motor vehicle and you can get away with it.' This sends out the wrong message entirely. This makes cyclists more vulnerable when the perp knows (s)he'll get away with it, an example I've just witnessed about ten minutes ago on the Padiham bypass. Chris P Bacon
  • Score: 0

12:11pm Thu 7 Jul 11

Chris P Bacon says...

Compare it with this case ... http://www.shropshir
estar.com/news/2011/
07/02/prison-for-dri
ver-who-killed-chari
ty-cyclist/ and ask yourself, 'where's the consistency in that?' How is it that one man's life seems to be worth more than another's?
Compare it with this case ... http://www.shropshir estar.com/news/2011/ 07/02/prison-for-dri ver-who-killed-chari ty-cyclist/ and ask yourself, 'where's the consistency in that?' How is it that one man's life seems to be worth more than another's? Chris P Bacon
  • Score: 0

2:38pm Thu 7 Jul 11

Paul Cockerton says...

happycyclist wrote:
Why is there a second report on this?
The first story was a court report, this is a follow-up interview afterwards with the parents of the man who was killed.
[quote][p][bold]happycyclist[/bold] wrote: Why is there a second report on this?[/p][/quote]The first story was a court report, this is a follow-up interview afterwards with the parents of the man who was killed. Paul Cockerton
  • Score: 0

5:46pm Thu 7 Jul 11

Inderain says...

This sentence is pathetically lenient given what the defendant Andrew Edwards is reported to have done. A potato sitting as a judge would have give a more severe sentence. This is yet more evidence that courts and judges in them are totally divorced from the real world. This lenient sentence is a stain on what is supposed to be the "great judicial system" of the United Kingdom. Shame on this judge.

If he has family I hope his son, brother, dad, grandson are not run down by this killer driver or all the other killer drivers who have got off with lame excuses or received unduly light sentences for killing cyclists eg Edilh Cairns. If Andrew Edwards had been convicted of animal cruelty (which is a serious offence but not proportionately as serious) he would have received a harsher sentence.

Cyclists really are THIRD CLASS citizens in the eyes of the law and courts. I gave up road riding earlier this year after being knocked down for the 2nd time in 10 years after over 30 years of road riding as road riding has simply become too dangerous. To add insult to injury the authorities and courts do bugger all to catch and punish killer drivers when they do catch them.

If you want to kill some one and get away with it - do it in a car/motor vehicle or if you want to throw away all your rights to be treated fairly then get on a bicycle ...........

The decision and sentencing of Andrew Edwards by this judge stinks and brings the justice system into disrepute.

I would urge anyone and everyone who is outrage by this lenient sentence to appeal to the Attorney General for the sentence to be increased.
This sentence is pathetically lenient given what the defendant Andrew Edwards is reported to have done. A potato sitting as a judge would have give a more severe sentence. This is yet more evidence that courts and judges in them are totally divorced from the real world. This lenient sentence is a stain on what is supposed to be the "great judicial system" of the United Kingdom. Shame on this judge. If he has family I hope his son, brother, dad, grandson are not run down by this killer driver or all the other killer drivers who have got off with lame excuses or received unduly light sentences for killing cyclists eg Edilh Cairns. If Andrew Edwards had been convicted of animal cruelty (which is a serious offence but not proportionately as serious) he would have received a harsher sentence. Cyclists really are THIRD CLASS citizens in the eyes of the law and courts. I gave up road riding earlier this year after being knocked down for the 2nd time in 10 years after over 30 years of road riding as road riding has simply become too dangerous. To add insult to injury the authorities and courts do bugger all to catch and punish killer drivers when they do catch them. If you want to kill some one and get away with it - do it in a car/motor vehicle or if you want to throw away all your rights to be treated fairly then get on a bicycle ........... The decision and sentencing of Andrew Edwards by this judge stinks and brings the justice system into disrepute. I would urge anyone and everyone who is outrage by this lenient sentence to appeal to the Attorney General for the sentence to be increased. Inderain
  • Score: 0

10:10pm Wed 13 Jul 11

hairy mary says...

in my opinion as an hgv class 1 driver i think this man who obviously lost concentration panicked after realising what he had just done ,should have been locked up for a few years and should have lost his licence for at least 10 years theres no excuse for incompetence
in my opinion as an hgv class 1 driver i think this man who obviously lost concentration panicked after realising what he had just done ,should have been locked up for a few years and should have lost his licence for at least 10 years theres no excuse for incompetence hairy mary
  • Score: 0

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