Wembley man who ploughed car into ex-girlfriend’s Berkshire home loses appeal

Edmund Everett Bruton was convicted of damaging property with intent to endanger life and dangerous driving

A jealous lover who tried to kill himself by driving into his ex-girlfriend’s house has failed to overturn his potentially lifelong sentence.

Edmund Everett Bruton, 42, of Harrow Road, Wembley, was jailed indefinitely for public protection (IPP) after he ploughed into Tara Lavery’s Berkshire home at 80mph last year, endangering her four children.

He was convicted of damaging property with intent to endanger life and dangerous driving after a trial at Inner London Crown Court.

Yesterday (Wednesday) at the Court of Appeal, he failed to have his convictions and the open-ended sentence quashed, but did get his lifelong driving ban overturned, meaning he will be able to take a new test if he is released after his seven-and-a-half-year minimum term.

Mr Justice Owen, sitting with Lord Justice Elias and Judge Clement Goldstone QC, told the court Bruton had been in a relationship with Miss Lavery but took their break-up badly.

In February last year he downed a litre of anti-freeze before driving his Peugeot into the front room wall of her home in while she and her children were at home.

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He told police he had placed a screwdriver and gardening fork near the car’s steering wheel to kill himself in the impact, but despite being injured, he was saved by emergency services, the judge said.

Bruton claimed that his convictions were “unsafe” because some of the evidence was removed from the crime scene by building workers, and the judge had misdirected the jury.

Mr Justice Owen backed the convictions, and Bruton’s open-ended sentence, finding the points he raised were of “peripheral relevance”.

The appeal judges did however find that the life driving ban imposed on Bruton for the dangerous driving offence was “unnecessary”, replacing it with a five-year disqualification.