Motorbike rider who was found with drugs in his car is jailed for eight years after fatal collision

PUBLISHED: 16:21 26 April 2019

Motorbike rider Jack O’Donnell killed a pedestrian as he sped off after being spotted by officers in an unmarked police car. He has been jailed for eight years. Picture: CAMBS POLICE.

Motorbike rider Jack O'Donnell killed a pedestrian as he sped off after being spotted by officers in an unmarked police car. He has been jailed for eight years. Picture: CAMBS POLICE.

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A motorbike rider who killed a pedestrian as he sped off after being spotted by officers in an unmarked police car has been jailed.

Jack O'Donnell, of Tempsford Avenue, Borehamwood, was riding a motorbike with his girlfriend as a pillion passenger on February 13.

The 25-year-old was travelling along Kings Hedges Road, in Cambridge, at just after 2pm when an unmarked police car pulled up behind him.

Two police officers in the car saw O'Donnell drive off at speed eastbound along Arbury Road.

Officers did not engage in a pursuit with O'Donnell, but instead travelled along Arbury Road with a plan to notify the force control room what they had seen.

O'Donnell drove the motorbike about 800 metres along Arbury Road before he spotted temporary roadworks, controlled by a four-way traffic light system.

He rode at speeds of between 34 and 38mph - almost double the road's 20mph limit – Cambridge Crown Court heard.

Ignoring the red light at the junction of Campkin Road, O'Donnell then struck pedestrian Lesley Bello-Hernandez, 67, of Ashvale, Cambridge, who sustained fatal injuries and died at the scene.

Mrs Bello-Hernandez had used a designated crossing point and had waited for the pedestrian light to turn green, crossing four seconds later.

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Following the collision, 26 wraps of class A drugs were recovered from the scene.

The drugs, a mixture of cocaine and heroin, were examined and found to have a street value of £260.

O'Donnell was arrested and in police interview the following day he gave a prepared statement to officers.

He admitted owning the moped and not having a licence or insurance, and claimed he was 'shocked' to find himself arrested for death by dangerous driving.

O'Donnell said he couldn't remember the day clearly due to the collision, but added that he wouldn't have put a pedestrian's life deliberately in danger.

He claimed he was 'truly sorry' that someone's life had been lost in the collision and said he would 'turn back time if he could'. O'Donnell's girlfriend was also arrested but faced no further action.

O'Donnell previously pleaded guilty to charges of causing death by dangerous driving, causing death by driving a vehicle while unlicensed and uninsured, and two charges of possession with intent to supply class A drugs.

He appeared at Cambridge Crown Court today (April 26) where he was sentenced to a total of eight years in prison. He was also disqualified from driving for nine years.

PC Kevin Drury, who investigated the case with Sergeant Mark Dollard, said: “This was a heartbreaking case which has left Mrs Bello-Hernandez's family devastated.

“The manner of O'Donnell's driving that day killed a 67-year-old woman who was simply crossing the road at the green light.

“It takes a matter of seconds for a situation to change and for the consequences to become fatal. There is absolutely no excuse to ever drive in the way O'Donnell did that day.”

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