Man jailed for 28 months after crash which seriously injured eight-year-old girl
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A motorist who was over the drink and drug drive limit has been jailed for 28 months after he hit an eight-year-old girl and her grandmother in his van and fled the scene.
Christopher Godwin, 35, was driving on Bath Road in Southampton when he collided with the girl, who was riding her bicycle on the pavement.
The collision, which happened around 7.10pm on May 25, last year, left the youngster with serious injuries to her arm and leg and her grandmother with minor injuries.
Godwin, of Southampton, then left the scene in his Ford Transit Flatbed van.
When officers attended the scene, they quickly located CCTV footage from a nearby address and were able to identify the van, as it had a business name on the side.
Within hours, they had tracked Godwin and the Transit van to an address in Harefield.
As well as arresting him, officers carried out a breath test and drugs wipe.
Godwin blew an alcohol reading of 83 micrograms per 100 millilitres of breath – just over twice the legal limit – and, after a positive drugs wipe, a blood test found he had 352ug/L of cocaine in his system, which is over seven times the legal limit.
An examination of Godwin’s van revealed a number of faults, including it having no wing mirrors, two tyres being below the legal tread depth and one of the brake pads being worn beyond serviceability.
When interview, he told officers he was not aware he had hit a person, instead believing he had hit another vehicle and said he knew he should have stopped at the scene.
Godwin admitted failing to stop, causing serious injury by dangerous driving, drink driving and drug driving.
He was jailed for 28 months at Southampton Crown Court yesterday (January 17), and also disqualified from driving for four years after his release from prison.
The judge also ordered he must complete an extended re-test once he has able to drive again.
Investigating officer Sergeant Rebecca Hodge, of the Roads Policing Unit, said: “This is a case in which a young girl suffered serious injuries which were wholly avoidable.
“After attending the scene and locating CCTV from a nearby address, we tracked down Godwin within hours of the collision.
“This should serve as a warning. If you fail to stop at the scene of an accident, we will find you.
“I also want to urge people not to drive while impaired through drink and drugs.
“The consequences for you and, most importantly, other road users and their families can be catastrophic.
“The message is simple – it’s not worth the risk.”