Jail for Nelson driver who mowed down grandma

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A dangerous driver who has left a grandmother with life-changing injuries passed his driving test a fortnight after the collision, a court heard.

Akif Hussain (20), of Chatham Street, Nelson, knocked pensioner Jean Gribble down as she crossed Leeds Road on September 15th last year. He had been travelling at an estimated 59mph in a 30mph zone, when two of his friends were in the car.

JAILED: Akif Hussain (S)

JAILED: Akif Hussain (S)

Prosecuting Amanda Johnson said the defendant would have been 67m to 94m away from the victim, when she began crossing the road. Had he been travelling at the correct speed, the collision could have been avoided.

Hussain, who pleaded guilty to dangerous driving and inflicting grievous bodily harm, was jailed for 18 months, banned from driving for the next two years, and ordered to pay the victim £2,000 compensation within the next six months. He also admitted driving without a licence and driving with no insurance.

The court heard that Hussain, who had bought his green Honda Civic to help him commute to Bradford University, had passed his driving test following the collision. However, according to his counsel, he had not been driving since.

And despite initially lying to the police about his speed, the defendant, who had volunteered for the British Heart Foundation, later admitted that hitting the victim was “like a gunshot to the windshield”. He called himself an “idiot” and expressed “great remorse”.

Nicholas Worsley (defending) said: “This is something that is out of character for him. This is a young man capable of working and putting back into the community.

“The victim and family are living with the injuries Mrs Gribble has sustained. He, in his own way, is having to live with them as well.”

And passing sentence, Recorder Nicholas Clarke said: “I have no doubt that you were showing off to your two friends who were in the vehicle.

“Cars are exceptionally dangerous weapons. When they are driven at dangerous speeds, they become missiles.”

Following the collision, Mrs Gribble, who was 74-years-old at the time, spent seven months in hospital.

She suffered a variety of injuries, including a broken hip, nerve damage and a fractured right leg. The keen walker, who has since been battling depression, is now forced to use a walking frame and has had to have the downstairs of her house specially adapted to meet her needs. She had previously lived an active social life, and had looked after her five grandchildren regularly.

Sgt Finn Quainton said: “This was very serious collision which has left an elderly lady with life-changing injuries.

“She was very active before the accident and has now spent months in hospital.

“Since it happened she has completely lost her independence and has been bed ridden for months.

“We are grateful to the members of the public who arrived at the scene to help and have since supported our investigation.

“This case should highlight the consequences of reckless and dangerous driving, which played a huge part in this tragic incident.

“It should serve as a strong warning to people who choose to drive dangerously and without a licence and insurance.”