Killer driver who hit up to 141mph before 90mph crash jailed for eight years

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A drug-driver who was recorded speeding at up to 141mph shortly before killing two women in a horrific crash on a blind bend has been jailed for eight years.

Daniel Young killed Caroline Ball, 63, and 59-year-old Margaret Collier – who both died almost instantly, while overtaking a line of cars at about 90mph just four months after getting his licence back following a six-month ban.

Derby Crown Court was also told that the 25-year-old Amazon warehouse worker filmed a video named “How to Beat the Speed Cameras” a few weeks before the fatal crash – showing him deliberately driving on the wrong side of the nearby B6052 at 80mph in a 30mph zone.

The court heard the victims, who both worked as cleaners at a site near the M1, had travelled from their homes in the Sheffield area along the A6135 through Eckington, before their vehicle was hit head-on at Renishaw on the morning of October 7, 2020.

Judge Shaun Smith QC was told Young left work after a night shift at Amazon’s site in Barlborough, near Chesterfield, at 5.30am and drove his BMW on the A6135 at between 115mph and 141mph in a 40mph zone.

Passing sentence, Judge Smith ordered Young to serve a 10-year driving ban after his release from prison.

Young, who appeared via a video-link from HMP Lincoln, looked at the floor and appeared to fight back tears as Judge Smith told him that a lorry driver had wrongly thought the BMW was racing another vehicle because of its speed.

The judge told Young: “The next time you were seen was when you went past a camera outside a local Co-op.

“The time-over-distance calculation has been worked out. You were travelling between 115mph and 141mph down the hill towards Renishaw on a speed limit of 40mph.

“Your next manoeuvre was to overtake the vehicles in front of you around a blind bend, on the wrong side of the road.

“You negotiated that bend at approximately 90mph. Tragically Caroline and Margaret were travelling on the opposite carriageway.

“As they went around that bend the last thing they would have seen was your car on their side of the road.”

The court was told the impact occurred with such force that the Corsa being driven by Ms Ball was pushed 30 metres backwards into a hedge.

Judge Smith said a blood test had shown that Young, of Drury Lane, Coal Aston, Dronfield, was twice the legal limit for cannabis.

Young pleaded guilty to two counts of causing death by dangerous driving, having initially denied speeding while claiming he was not to blame for the “tragic accident”.

But Judge Smith told him: “A mobile phone taken from you on arrest tells another story. A video with the title ‘How to Beat the Speed Cameras’ was found on the handset.

“It was filmed from the driver’s seat of your car – you could be heard laughing and talking and were filming yourself driving.

“On that occasion you were travelling at over 80mph when the speed limit was 30mph.”

The judge added: “I appreciate what is said in the victim personal statements (by relatives of those killed) about these kind of offences being like murder and that equivalent sentences ought to apply.

“But Parliament has decreed otherwise.

“You demonstrated by the presence of that video a reckless disregard for speed limits and a determination to avoid detection.”

Commenting on the case, Detective Constable Scott Cooper, from Derbyshire Constabulary’s Collision Investigation Unit, said: “The complete disregard that Daniel Young showed that morning is utterly staggering.

“But this was no one-off event. The evidence found on his own phone shows that he would use the public roads as his own personal racetrack – filming himself laughing at speeds that would eventually rob two families of two beloved women.

“The sentence handed down to Young will never bring back Caroline and Margaret, but I hope that it brings some closure to their families, and shows that driving in the same way as Young is simply unacceptable.”

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