Neasden lorry driver receives suspended jail sentence after crushing A-Level student

Robert Mason struck 18-year-old after reversing the wrong way down Baker Street

A lorry driver has received a suspended jail sentence after he crushed a student while reversing the wrong way down a busy street.

Robert Mason, 43, of North Circular Road, Neasden, left the 18-year-old with life-threatening injuries following the incident on Baker Street, Marylebone, on August 18 last year.

Today (Monday), Southwark Crown Court heard the teenager was on his way to collect his A-Level results when he was crushed under the wheels of Mason’s vehicle on the one-way road.

After sustaining a broken and de-gloved femur and a crushed pelvis he had to undergo eight operations and has since made an “extraordinary recovery”.

Following a five-week stay in hospital and 12 weeks using a walking stick, he is able to walk normally.

Mason was parking to pick up a sandwich and although his heavy goods vehicle had a number of measures fitted to help him when reversing but none of them were in place at the time of the accident.

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The audible beeping warning to alert pedestrians was switched off, the side reversing mirror was incorrectly positioned and the reversing camera was not working.

Helen Thomas, prosecuting, told the court the victim was speaking to a friend on his phone when he was hit.

She said: “He was waiting for his A-Level results talking to his friend about getting their results.”

“As he stepped off the curb he looked towards the flow of traffic where he expected it to be coming from but he was hit.”

A victim impact statement read out in court stated: “I view it as a tragic accident and do not think for one second [the driver] set out to harm me.”

It continued: “I think myself lucky to be alive.”

The court heard the driver of a bus on the road sounded its horn in a bid to alert Mason to the pedestrian but the lorry driver failed to hear it.

Defence counsel Matthew Hardyman told the court his client had suffered from a “moment of madness”.

Mason pleaded guilty to a charge of dangerous driving. He received a nine-month jail sentence suspended for a year, a six-month supervision order and 100 hours unpaid work. He was also disqualified for driving for one year.

Judge Michael Grieve QC said: “The one really happy part of this is the extraordinarily good recovery made from a life-threatening situation.”