Injured motorbiker Charles Hancock faces prison after riding on a pavement

Teenager pays heavy price for ‘monumental error’

Teenager pays heavy price for ‘monumental error’

First published in News
Last updated
by , Court reporter

A YOUNG man faces prison, his career hopes in tatters and life with a paralysed arm because he rode a motorcycle on a pavement, York magistrates heard.

Charles Hancock, 19, crashed into a farmer’s trailer being towed through Tadcaster when he came off the pavement on a bend, said Kathryn Reeve, prosecuting.

The farmer thought the motorcyclist was racing a car which was coming towards his tractor and trailer round a bend in Oxton Road, the court heard.

He tried to swerve out of the way as the motorcyclist left the pavement and headed directly towards his vehicle, but was unable to avoid a collision.

Andrew Craven, mitigating, said the motorcyclist had not been racing the car, but had been using the pavement as the shortest route to his destination.

He was sucked into the road by passing traffic.

Hancock’s arm was so badly injured in the collision, his right arm was permanently paralysed and he will not be able to achieve his ambition of becoming a motor mechanic.

“Unfortunately, he made a monumental error of judgement on this day,” Mr Craven told magistrates. “You cannot punish him any more than he has already been punished.”

But magistrates said Hancock’s driving was so bad they were considering jailing him for 12 weeks and adjourned a decision for a pre-sentence report.

Senior magistrate Malcolm Smith said: “The motorcyclist was riding on a footpath on the wrong side of the road at speed and approaching a corner. It was in a built-up area and it is only by sheer chance that no pedestrians were coming the other way at the time.”

Hancock, of York Road, Tadcaster, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving and was released on unconditional bail until January 30.

Magistrates also banned him from driving until then, when their colleagues will decide on the full length of the driving ban, which must be at least 12 months. He will also have to retake his driving test.

Ms Reeve said the farmer was driving towards Bolton Piercy at an average speed of 25 mph at 2.50 pm on February 20 when he saw the car coming towards him on its correct side of the road and the motorcyclist coming towards him on his near side.

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