Drink-driver jailed for fatal collision

A drink-driver who killed a husband and wife travelling home after attending the Crowborough Carnival in 2017 has today been jailed.

Benjamin Bosden was found to have a blood alcohol level in excess of the legal limit and to have been travelling at well over the 60mph speed limit when the tragic incident occurred on the A267 at Cross-In-Hand.

The 20-year-old student, of Rushlake Green, Heathfield, had been driving a Mini Countryman, John Cooper Works model, northbound when he crossed into the southbound carriageway and smashed into a Ford Ranger travelling in the opposite direction, just north of Meres Lane. The speedo on the Mini was found stuck at 112mph immediately after the collision.

The crash on 9th September 2017 at 11.30pm claimed the lives of David and Linda Evans from Pook Reed Lane in Heathfield, who had been talking part in the Crowborough Carnival procession. David and Linda were described by relatives and friends as “a shining example of a fun-loving couple with a zest for life.”

The Crash also left Bosden’s 18-year-old female passenger with life-threatening injuries requiring emergency surgery.

The driver of the Ford, David Evans, aged 55, and his wife Linda, aged 48, who was the front passenger, were killed instantly.

So severe was the impact that the Ford was stopped in its tracks and pushed backwards off the road. The scene was described by those who came across it as “something out of a war zone or off of the TV.”

David and Linda’s family said:

The irresponsible and thoughtless actions of one young man have caused the death of two people. This has led to the immeasurable, intense and wide-ranging grief and feelings of devastation in the lives of so many family members and friends. These lives can never be the same.

Bosden had pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to two counts of causing death by dangerous driving and one of causing serious injury by dangerous driving, which takes into account the offences of speeding and drink-driving.

At Lewes Crown Court on Monday 3rd June, he was sentenced by Judge Christine Laing QC to a total of five years’ imprisonment.

Addressing Bosden at sentencing, she said:

You drove at a frankly ludicrous speed for the conditions and alcohol played a significant part. You showed a flagrant disregard for the rules of the road and an utter disregard for the serious danger you posed for other road users.

The Investigating Officer, PC Shirley Ross, of the Serious Collision Investigation Unit, said:

This collision was another tragic case where lives were needlessly lost and others devastated.

Bosden’s decision that day to get behind the wheel of a high powered car and to drive in the reckless manner that he did, having consumed alcohol was nothing short of dangerous.

This case is another stark warning to all drivers, particularly those in this young age bracket, of the devastating consequences of exceeding speed limits and driving whilst under the influence of alcohol.

The Police’s advice is simple – drink OR drive; never both.

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