David Cameron hints at review of death by dangerous driving sentences following deaths of Hampshire teens

Daily Echo: Prime Minister hints at death crash sentence review Prime Minister hints at death crash sentence review

THE Prime Minister has hinted there should be a review of sentences for causing death by dangerous driving following a double tragedy in Hampshire.

David Cameron made indicated there could be a change as he was responding to questions in Parliament following the jailing for nine years of Samuel Etherington.

As previously reported the 20-year-old driver was sentenced after admitting killing Jasmine Allsop, 14, and Olivia Lewry, 16, who he hit with his car at 65mph after taking drugs.

Etherington of Stoners Close, Gosport, was sentenced at Winchester Crown Court, where he admitted two counts of causing death by dangerous driving.

The matter was raised in Parliament by Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage who is calling for a review of the maximum sentence for causing death by dangerous driving, which currently stands at 14 years.

She said: "Last week a judge sentenced a Gosport man to nine years in prison for causing the death by dangerous driving of two teenage girls.

"Given that amounts to effectively four years per life, does the prime minister agree that it is high time we looked again at the maximum sentence for causing death by dangerous driving?"

Mr Cameron said the issue of dangerous driving had previously been brought to his attention and added: "I think it's important that the Lord Chancellor and his department look carefully at what more we can do to send the clearest possible message about the unacceptability of this crime."

As reported, Judge Guy Boney QC said it was one of the most serious cases of death by dangerous driving seen by the courts for a very long time.

He told Etherington: “You are quite simply a menace behind the steering wheel of a car.”

Jasmine, a pupil at Brune Park Community School, who lived just yards from where the crash happened in Gosport, died at the scene while her friend, Olivia, who attended St Vincent College, died later in hospital.

Nicholas Haggan QC, prosecuting, said blood tests carried out on Etherington showed that he had taken “recreational levels” of ketamine and mephedrone.

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