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American driver flees UK after crash leaves British nurse unable to walk

The UK is considering extraditing an American driver who fled the country after a crash that left a British nurse unable to walk.

Mystery surrounds exactly who 22-year-old Issac Calderon really is after the victim of the crash was told by police that he had been visiting a British special forces base (SAS) near Hereford.

Elizabeth Donowho told Sky News that she was "devastated" when Calderon, who is accused of causing injury by dangerous driving, failed to turn up to a hearing at Kidderminster Magistrates' Court on 1 December. A warrant was issued for his arrest.

In court, Calderon's occupation was given as "American soldier", according to the Hereford Times.

Ms Donowho - who is 56 and from Malvern in Worcestershire - broke both of her ankles in the collision and was also left with a fractured sternum and a broken bone in her hand. She was unable to walk for six weeks following the collision.

It happened on the A4103 near Shucknall in Herefordshire on 31 July.

She said police officers had explained to her that Calderon had driven from Cambridgeshire, where he was based as an American person working in this country.

"I was told that he was visiting somebody at the SAS in Hereford," she added.

"So there was something like 'so you can understand the nature of the other driver's work in this country, bearing in mind he was visiting the SAS'."

"It was later on that they confirmed [to me] that he has been working for the US intelligence services, I think they said secret services."

However, a spokesperson for West Mercia Police told Sky News that they were unaware of any connection to the SAS base in Hereford, but they understood Calderon was in the country on a "work visa".

In a statement they said: "It's believed Mr Calderon is currently in the United States.

"We have been working to reach him both directly and through formal channels and will continue to do so.

"We are preparing appropriate paperwork should we need to request extradition to ensure that the case can be heard in court."

Mrs Donowho said she had "fully expected" the defendant to turn up to court.

"I've been given this assurance by the police that they'd spoken to British military police, who had spoken to American military police, who had agreed to take all the necessary steps to keep the other driver in this country so that he could attend court.

"They cited the case of Anne Sacoolas as the reason for this because they realised that the other driver was a flight risk."

In 2019 Anne Sacoolas, a US spy, left the UK claiming diplomatic immunity after she was involved in a crash that killed British teenager Harry Dunn outside an RAF base in Northamptonshire.

Sky News understands that there aren't any issues of diplomatic immunity in this case.

It's believed that Calderon left the UK for the US on 25 November on a commercial flight to Houston, Texas.

A spokesperson for the British government said: "We are concerned at reports that Issac Calderon has failed to appear in court to answer charges.

"The Crown Prosecution Service are considering next steps."

The nurse, who has been unable to return to work due to her injuries, said: "I lead a very quiet life, I go to work, come home, go swimming, look after my cats, now I'm in this awful mess.

"It turns out he was able to stroll out of the country before the hearing.

"They were absolutely aware he was a flight risk, and they were aware of the case of Anne Sacoolas."

Sky News contacted the US State Department and the US Embassy in the UK for comment.

A spokesperson for the US Embassy said: "As a general matter, we do not comment on ongoing litigation in cases involving US citizens."