Convicted death crash driver who went on the run turns himself into police
PUBLISHED: 13:38 30 October 2020 | UPDATED: 13:38 30 October 2020
A man who went on the run before being jailed for causing the death by dangerous driving of veterinary nurse Rachel Radwell, handed himself in to police today.
Vytautas Kiminius, 35, turned up at Thorpe Wood Police Station in the early hours of today.
He had been released on court bail after being found guilty of causing death by dangerous driving, but did not attend his sentencing at Peterborough Crown Court on May 14.
He will now begin serving his prison sentence of four years and six months.
Sergeant Mark Dollard said: “Instead of facing justice he decided to go on the run with his family after being granted court bail.
“We worked tirelessly with other agencies to track him down and following various news stories a number of new leads from the public were followed.
“I am in no doubt Kiminius felt this pressure and handed himself in.
“I hope Rachel Radwell’s family can now truly feel they have gained justice. I personally want to thank them for their patience and dignity through what I can only imagine is a really difficult period.”
In a statement, the family of Rachel Radwell said: “We are extremely relieved and pleased to hear that Kiminius has been found and will serve his sentence for Rachel’s death.
“We would like to thank the police for all their hard work behind the scenes.
“It means we can finally try to move forward and remember all the positive and wonderful things about Rachel instead of dwelling on the accident. Justice will finally be served for us as a family.”
Rachel, 46, died following a collision on the B1095 between Peterborough and Pondersbridge near Whittlesey involving her grey Ford Fiesta and a black Range Rover.
Kiminius was not in court for sentencing, having fled the country whilst on bail.
Sgt Dollard said: ‘It is believed Kiminius left the country soon after his conviction.
‘He was bailed to reappear for sentencing with conditions including a surety, surrender of travel documents and electronic tagging.
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‘Police were made aware of breaches to his tagging and identified at an early stage he and his family fled the family home and are believed to have left the country.
‘Kiminius then later failed to attend his sentencing hearing.”
‘Efforts are ongoing to locate him and a European Arrest Warrant has been issued.
Kiminius had been driving a Range Rover Sport in the early hours of November 12, 2018 when he crashed into a Ford Fiesta being driven by Rache.
Kiminius admitted back in February – the first day of the trial -to driving while uninsured and was found guilty of causing Miss Radwell’s death by dangerous driving.
Ms Radwell was the head veterinary nurse at Wood Green animal shelter; her mother told the court hearing earlier this year that her daughter “didn’t deserve to have her life cut short so soon”.
Judge Sean Enright described Ms Radwell as a “much-loved daughter and aunt”.
Sgt Dollard said: “The fact [Kiminius] left the country before he could be sentenced has been incredibly upsetting for Rachel Radwell’s family.”
Kiminius was living at Sudbury Court, Peterborough; he has two young children.
Judge Sean Enright, sentencing, said Miss Radwell, of Yaxley, was a ‘much-loved daughter and aunt’ whose funeral was attended by more than 200 people.
‘I know she is sorely missed,’ he said.
He jailed Kiminius for four years and six months for causing death by dangerous driving, and nine months for driving while uninsured, to run concurrently.
Four years ago, Rachel had been short listed for a Vet Nurse of the Year award.
She had been chosen for the Ceva Animal Welfare awards after her work at Wood Green, the animal charity, where she had been based for 25 years.
The charity cares for dogs, cats, small animals like rats and guinea pigs, and its Godmanchester headquarters is one of the largest re-homing centres in Europe.
Rachel helped the centre become the only re-homing charity in the UK to gain gold standard accreditation as a Cat Friendly Clinic in 2015; she also home fostered some of the animals.
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