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Death crash trial halted by new evidence
7:30am Wednesday 6th October 2010 in News
THE trial of a man accused of killing a 53-year-old woman in a car crash collapsed yesterday after new evidence suggested it was a tragic accident.
Pedro Cardoso was charged with causing the death of Linda Bennett by careless driving on the B4022 Witney Road, near Finstock, where Mrs Bennett lived with her family, in November last year.
But, as his trial was due to start at Oxford Crown Court yesterday, a police reconstruction shed new light on the crash – which Mr Cardoso cannot remember – and the Crown Prosecution Service offered no evidence.
Investigating officer Sgt Jack Hawkins said the layout of the bend could have given the illusion Mrs Bennett’s headlights were on the wrong side of the road, causing Mr Cardoso to take evasive action.
Speaking outside court, he said: “The road bears round to the left as you’re driving in the direction of Mr Cardoso and the road falls into a dip slightly.
“And if, when you drive along that road you come to that point, for all intents and purposes, headlights could be directly in front of you.”
Sgt Hawkins said the design of the road may be reassessed, but no other crashes had occurred at the scene.
Judge Tom Corrie said: “It was an entirely proper decision which has the court’s approval, and it’s no reflection on the CPS that new evidence emerged at a late stage. There is no criticism of anybody involved.”
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