Driver admits causing the death of young motorcyclist in crash near Fakenham

A 31-year-old driver has admitted causing the death of a young motorcyclist killed in a crash near Fakenham.

Grant Slater hit Robert Winner's Honda motorcycle when he joined the A1065 at Weasenham without giving way to oncoming traffic, King's Lynn Magistrates' Court heard yesterday (Monday).

Mr Winner, 25, from Sporle near Swaffham, died from his injuries despite the best efforts of Slater and a passer-by to revive him at the scene of the crash on January 20.

Slater, of Valley Road, Ipswich, pleaded guilty to causing death by careless driving and magistrates have not ruled out a custodial sentence when the case returns to court early next month.

The bench heard both men had been travelling to work when the crash happened at the junction with Low Street just before 7am.

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Jospehine Jones, prosecuting, said a Mitsubishi L200 pick-up truck driven by Slater was seen pulling on to the A1065 without stopping, hitting the front of Mr Winner's motorbike.

A witness told police the weather had been wet and windy and there was nothing the motorcyclist could have done to avoid the collision.

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Mr Winner had been travelling at a steady speed with his lights on before the crash and the court heard he was a sensible rider not under the influence of drink or drugs.

Slater immediately stopped at the scene and performed CPR on Mr Winner with the help of another driver until the paramedics could arrive, Ms Jones said.

When interviewed by police, Slater said he saw the motorbike approaching but believed he had enough time to pull out in front of it.

'He accepted that he totally misjudged the distance,' Ms Jones said.

Alistair Taunton, mitigating, said Slater was genuinely remorseful and was receiving counselling for post traumatic stress.

The court heard he had lost his job and his home as a result of the crash and had been forced to move into a caravan and claim benefits.

'It has had an affect on his health,' Mr Taunton said. 'He is not sleeping and has seen a consultant psychiatrist.

'He knows what he did wrong and it's something he will have hanging over him for the rest of his life. He also knows that he's going through is nothing compared to what Mr Winner's family has gone through.'

In a statement summarised in court, Mr Winner's family described him as a quiet and friendly young man who had just started to learn to drive.

Slater was released on unconditional bail and given an interim driving ban. He is due to be sentenced at the King's Lynn court on December 3.

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