A man who was so drunk he had no recollection of driving home has been jailed after smashing his car into a university student while she was getting out of a taxi.

Liam Hock had left work at around 3.15pm on December 20 2019 and went to the pub where he 'drank lager until God knows what time', Preston Crown Court heard.

The 33-year-old told police he could not remember driving home or the collision, which left his victim Bethany Hulme in a wheelchair for months, when officers turned up at his home at 1.48am, less than an hour after the near-fatal crash.

Prosecuting, Andrew Evans said: "Bethany Hulme had been to a 21st birthday party at Burnley Football Club and when that finished around midnight, her and her friends wanted to carry on the party so they went to a pub in Colne and took a taxi there.

"The taxi arrived in Colne and pulled up at the Duke of Lancaster pub at around 1am.

"The taxi driver said he couldn't pull onto the kerb as there were other vehicles around and lots of people, so he stopped next to another car adjacent to the bookshop.

"There was a pinch point in the road where a small speed bump was with the speed limit being 20mph.

"The pavement was crowded with people, and there were other taxis pulled up along the street, with people moving between the cars and crossing the road.

"Miss Hulme opened the sliding door of the taxi into oncoming traffic and was about to get out when Hock's car drove past and pulled the sliding door from the taxi off its hinges, dragging Miss Hulme into the road and taking the taxi door with him."

Hock failed to stop following the impact and continued driving along Market Street, narrowly missing two other people.

Mr Evans told the court Miss Hulme had no recollection of the incident, and still to this day does not remember exactly what happened.

He also said that Hock, of Langroyd Road, Colne, had been travelling along that stretch of road 'faster than any of the other cars', with no lights on.

While CCTV played in court did not show the moment of impact, it did show Hock's red Vauxhall Astra as it approached the 'pinch point' and into the taxi waiting area, and then picked up seconds after the collision and could be seen leaving the scene, while dozens of people ran to the aid of Miss Hulme.

Mr Evans continued: "Witnesses provided police with details and officers knocked on Hock's door at 1.48am. They could tell he was intoxicated and he told them he'd spent the night in Colne drinking.

"He was taken to the police station where he pretended to blow into a breathalyser and then stopped pretending to co-operate.

"He told officers he left work at 3.15pm and went to the pub and drank lager until God knows what time and had no recollection of the collision."

Miss Hulme, who was present in court along with her parents, suffered a fractured right arm and left shoulder as well as a fractured front and rear pelvis, was bound to a wheelchair for four months and suffered panic attacks.

She was also forced to drop out of her final year at uni where she was studying criminology, and it has taken her almost two years to make a physical recovery.

"Psychologically it will take longer," Mr Evans added.

Philip Holden told the court the incident had had a profound effect on his client, whose relationship had ended and he had lost his job.

He said: "He has three children and has a shared care agreement with the mother of his children. He was a hard working man and has expressed sincere and genuine remorse for his actions."

Hock pleaded guilty to causing serious injury by dangerous driving, failing to stop after an accident and failing to provide a breath specimen.

In sentencing him for 16 months, Judge Richard Gioserano said: "You were so drunk at the time that you couldn't remember how you got home.

"The reason you struck the taxi wasn't due to momentary undue attention or because you were distracted, it was because you had rendered yourself incapable of making any sound judgement behind the wheel of a car.

"It's very obvious that this could have been so much worse, for a number of people actually, not just Bethany Hulme.

"There's been a delay here and it should not have taken this long to come to court and I accept having this hang over you is punishment in itself."

As well as 16 months in prison, Hock was disqualified from driving for three years and eight months.

After the sentencing, a tearful Miss Hulme, who has now completed her final year degree, said: "I just want to put out a message to other people that getting in a car after having a drink is not worth the risk, not just for those you might hurt but for yourself and getting sent to prison.

"I am lucky that I survived and am OK now but some people aren't as lucky as me and my family have been."