Reckless driver, 23, who swerved 'death trap' BMW into traffic and killed his girlfriend, 20, in horror crash is jailed | The Sun
A RECKLESS driver who swerved his "death trap" BMW into traffic and killed his girlfriend in a horror crash has been jailed.
Liam Pusey, 23, was racing another car at speeds of up to 85mph in a 50mph zone with his 20-year-old girlfriend Melissa Osborn a passenger in the motor, a court heard.
The 23-year-old had carried out "dangerous modifications" to his grey 3 series, Portsmouth Crown Court heard today.
This included removing the anti roll bar and welding the differential to "deliberately" reduce the vehicle's traction, so that it would drift or slide more on the road.
The court heard how Pusey had been driving a heavily modified BMW 320D at 70mph north on the A32.
In the catastrophic crash, Pusey lost control of the car and span into the path of Louisa Wray in her silver Volkswagen Golf who despite her best effort "could no nothing".
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Tragically, despite being taken to hospital, Melissa died from her injuries.
Pusey was jailed for nine years and condemned by the judge for "dicing with the lives" of himself and his girlfriend.
The judge also told him he was "completely responsible" for the collision after losing control of the vehicle on the A32 near Droxford, Hants, back in February 2021.
Addressing Pusey, Judge William Ashworth said: "This was clearly a deliberate decision by you to ignore the rules of the road.
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"You deliberately sabotaged its inbuilt safety features which are there to prevent a loss of control.
"I have no doubt in my mind you removed the anti-roll bar – there is no doubt you did it."
Referring to the other modification of welding the cars differential, he added: "The purpose of both was so you could drift the car."
The court heard Pusey had been driving at 70mph on a 50mph single carriageway road through the, dark, wet, Hampshire countryside, before driving 'competitively' against a Skoda.
Of the night in question, Judge Ashworth said: "You were driving at excessive speed, too close to the car in front.
"You were driving too fast in road conditions you yourself described as awful.
"The car was a death trap in normal conditions, but driving it as you were, which rear end was deliberately modified to lost traction was an obvious and unreasonable decision to even think about driving the vehicle, let alone the way that you did."
With some water pooling on the road surface, the court heard a safe distance to be behind a vehicle whilst travelling at 70mph, would be 130m – but Pusey was just 24 metres behind.
Judge Ashworth added: "Melissa epitomised the spirit of kindness and love in a 20-year-old.
"We have lost one of the bright lights of the future. He bought the car specifically to go drifting on public roads.
"You (Pusey) are an immature person with no previous convictions and you lost a close friend."
Richard Orsborn, Melissa's father, said in his victim personal statement that his daughter "had meant the world to me" and the night of the crash had "changed his life forever".
Mr Osborn said he would "never forget her beautiful smile".
The court heard that having made the modifications to the car without telling his insurance company, he was consequently uninsured for the crash.
The driver of the Golf, 37-year-old Louisa Wray, suffered a broken left wrist and broken right foot.
Speaking afterwards, Hampshire Police Constable Lucy Hawkins, of the Roads Policing Serious Collision Investigation Unit, said: "Liam Pusey showed total disregard for the safety of his passenger and other road users by speeding in a dangerously unsafe vehicle.
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"His recklessness has taken the life of one woman and put another in hospital.
"I hope the result we got today makes other drivers think twice about their driving and the state of their vehicles."
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