Driver escapes jail after injuring man in hit and run incident

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A hit and run driver left a man so seriously injured in the road he was in a coma for two weeks.

Leeds Crown Court heard yesterday Rebecca Barber failed to stop after colliding with John Gibson near a mini roundabout after he left a West Yorkshire pub.

He remembered checking if the road was clear as he crossed at Scar Lane, Golcar, Huddersfield then nothing until coming to in hospital a fortnight later with multiple fractures including his legs, ribs, clavicle and coccyx.

Tom Storey prosecuting said Mr Gibson, 36, a sales representative spent five weeks in hospital and is still more than a year later having physiotherapy and facing further surgery. He had also not been able to resume his £30,000-a-year job when he prepared his victim impact statement.

The collision happened around midnight on April 4 last year soon after Mr Gibson and a friend Simon Porter left the Royal public house. A witness described seeing him flung up into the air as a car struck him and drove on.

Around 3.45am police discovered Barber asleep at the wheel of her car which had the lights switched on not far away in Radcliffe Road. She was wearing pyjamas and no socks or shoes and smelt of intoxicants and alcohol and was difficult to rouse. When officers did manage to do so she was sobbing into her hands, saying: “I didn’t mean to hit him, oh my God I didn’t mean to hit him.”

Barber, 24, of Royds Avenue, Linthwaite, Huddersfield admitted dangerous driving, failing to stop after an accident and failing to report the accident. She wept as she was given a nine months jail sentence suspended for 18 months with supervision, 125 hours unpaid work and a high level activity programme. She was also disqualified from driving for 18 months and ordered to take a retest.