Road rage drivers killed cyclist after arguing for 6 miles

Graham Pattison died in the collision in July 2020. (Reach)
Graham Pattison died in the collision in July 2020. (Reach)

A pair who were locked in a six-mile road rage row while driving at up to 70mph killed a cyclist who was thrown 40 metres in the air.

A jury found David Ferry and Paige Robinson guilty of causing the death of cyclist Graham Pattison by their dangerous driving.

A unanimous verdict was reached within three hours at Teesside Crown Court.

Robinson, 24, sobbed and Ferry, 47, didn't react as judge Jonathan Carroll told them: "A custodial sentence is inevitable. The only question is how long that will be. Be under no illusions, whatsoever, make arrangements between now and 1 June that are necessary before you go to prison."

Paige Robinson sobbed as she was told to expect a prison sentence. (Reach)
Paige Robinson sobbed as she was told to expect a prison sentence. (Reach)

Mr Pattison, a father-of-two, was cycling from Sedgefield to Wynyard on the A689 on 24 July, 2020 when he was hit by a car travelling close to 70 mph. Mr Pattison, 49, was propelled 40 metres into the air after Robinson's Ford Fiesta collided with his back wheel.

His injuries were catastrophic and he was pronounced dead a short while later. Robinson immediately told witnesses, who stopped to help Mr Pattison, that a black Audi had swerved left towards her, causing her to serve away to avoid a crash.

She said she didn't see Mr Pattison cycling close to the edge of the road. The court heard it was a bright, dry day and Mr Pattison was wearing a red and white striped top, a cycling helmet and had a flashing red light attached to his bike.

Ferry, who had been driving a black Audi TT sports coupe side-by-side with Robinson in the moments before the crash, simply drove on. He told police he hadn't seen the cyclist or the crash and that he "wanted to get home" to Redcar.

David Ferry outside the court. (Reach)
David Ferry outside the court. (Reach)

But Ferry and Robinson had spent a six-mile stretch of the A689, leading up to the crash, engaged in a road rage row.

Ferry claimed Robinson cut in front of him twice, after coming off the A1 at junction 60 and turning left onto Hartlepool Road.

Robinson claimed Ferry started gesticulating and swearing, and pointing at her to pull over. The two blamed each other for causing the fatal road crash throughout the trial. Ferry told the jury that Robinson began tailgating him along the A689.

The former army engineer said she was "aggressively harassing" him and that her boyfriend opened his window and was shouting, before he stuck two fingers up at Ferry.

The scene of the crash on the A689. (Reach)
The scene of the crash on the A689. (Reach)

Robinson claimed Ferry was the one who was angry and that he repeatedly slammed on his brakes and sped away, leaving her in fear of going into the back of him. She told the jury she pulled into the slow lane to get away from him, but that he then began to drive side-by-side with her, before swerving towards her.

Witnesses told the court that they saw Robinson's white Fiesta "wobble" before hitting Mr Pattison. A lorry driver who was travelling in the opposite direction said he heard a loud bang and "saw a cyclist travelling through the air".

Trevor Smith was driving behind Robinson and told the court: "The white car was quite close to the black car, they were side by side.

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"They seemed to be matching each other. The white car swerved to the left and it was a 'speed wobble' as if she was trying to get the car under control. The brake lights went on at that point.

"There was a cyclist in front of the white car. I can remember saying to my wife - ‘He’s going to get hit’ - I was referring to the cyclist. I was braking very hard, I was worried the cyclist might land in front of my car."

Robinson, of Billingham, and Ferry, of Redcar, were granted bail with the condition that they co-operate with the probation service, which will compile pre-sentence reports.

Following Thursday's verdict, the pair will be back in court on 1 June to be sentenced.