Drink drive brother jailed for causing death of his sister after his van crashed into the River Nene

09:08 12 March 2014

Natalie Scotchford.

Natalie Scotchford.

Archant

A man has been jailed for causing the death of his sister in an accident which saw the van they were travelling in crash into the River Nene.

At an earlier hearing, Nathan Scotchford, 23, of Daintree Road, Ramsey St Mary’s, pleaded guilty to the offence of causing death by driving without due care and attention while over the alcohol limit.

On Tuesday at Peterborough Crown Court he was sentenced to 20 months in prison.

He was also disqualified from driving for two years with the requirement to take another driving test before he can be allowed back on the road.

The court heard that Scotchford and his sister Natalie, 19, of Blenheim Road, Ramsey, were out socialising in the town before he decided to drive her home.

Edward Renvoize, prosecuting, said that Scotchford had “overcompensated” after hitting a verge, steering his van into the path of oncoming traffic and into the river.

Witnesses called the emergency services at 3.58am after seeing the van hit the water. The court heard that Scotchford tried to rescue his sister. The emergency services arrived at 4.15am and threw him a line.

Mr Renvoize said: “His concern was for his sister and he insisted that the emergency services did everything they could to extricate her.”

Rescue workers were able to free Miss Scotchford from the overturned vehicle. However, the beauty therapist was taken to Peterborough City Hospital where she died soon afterwards.

The court heard that Scotchford gave a reading of 61 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35 microgrammes.

James Macwhirter, mitigating, said: “He was a thoroughly decent, hard-working young man who is a credit to his parents and those members of his family who appear in court today.

“He will carry the responsibility for his beloved Natalie’s death for the remainder of his life.”

Sentencing, Judge Patrick O’Brien said a suspended sentence, as requested by the defence, would send out the wrong message .

“[I want to] ensure we won’t have more young people with cars driving relations and friends when they have had far too much to drink for it to be safe for them to do so,” he said.

“That would be the message that would go out if this simply went unpunished.”

Scotchford was also ordered to pay a £100 victim surcharge.

More news stories

Yesterday, 16:10
Littleport Level Crossing. Littleport, Cambridgeshire

MP Steve Barclay spoke today of the possibility of “significant local disruption” if Network Rail presses ahead with closing 11 level crossings in NE Cambs.

09:50
March House Fire.

A bungalow on The Shires, March had to be evacuated at the weekend after a fire spread from a garage to the roof of the home.

Yesterday, 23:05
Station road, Manea. Development. Picture: Steve Williams

Developers struggling to find a housing association willing to take four affordable homes in Manea off their hands – being built as part of the original contract- believe they have found a solution.

Yesterday, 16:29
Facet charity shop revamp, Chatteris. Manager Louise Bryan. Picture: Steve Williams.

Vintage meets shabby chic at a shop in Chatteris that has been treated to a step back in time make over.

Most read stories

Most commented stories

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Wisbech Standard e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up