A TRACTOR driver who caused the death of a pedestrian in a Lake District road tragedy has been sentenced by a judge.
Angus James Freeman, a 33-year-old farmer, appeared at Carlisle Crown Court today.
He pleaded guilty to causing the death of 59-year-old great grandmother Elaine Steele by careless driving at Troutbeck Bridge, near Windermere, on February 6 last year.
Holiday park worker Miss Steele, of Oxenholme, was walking on a pavement alongside the A591 when she was struck by Freeman’s five-tonne Massey Ferguson tractor.
She suffered severe head and neck injuries, and was pronounced dead at the scene.
The court heard Freeman had inexplicably failed to observe a “give way” sign and markings immediately before joining the A591 and striking Miss Steele.
But despite her heartbroken family wondering why, Freeman had no recollection nor explanation for exactly what happened on a route he used every day.
Having heard considerable mitigation on behalf of Freeman – a man of previous good character – Judge Barbara Forrester suspended a 24-week prison sentence for 12 months.
Freeman, of Town End Farm, Troutbeck, was also given a one-year driving ban and must pay £545 costs.
His lawyer, Anthony Haycroft, told the court: “Unfortunately this was a tragedy in the very true sense of the word.”
Westmorland Gazette, 8 August 2016