A “SELF-obsessed, selfish” motorcyclist who rode off after an accident leaving a young girl on the ground with life changing injuries has been jailed.

The girl was thrown into the air and hit her head on landing in York last year, said Laura Addy, prosecuting.

Nathan James Robert Lofthouse “clearly knew he had collided with a person,” she said. “He didn’t stop. He made off from the scene.”

Lofthouse hid his clothes and motorbike and for months lied that he was not involved in the accident, including after a friend told him about the injured girl.

But police found the bike within hours and Lofthouse’s drug dealing cannabis cache.

Police said outside court the girl had been left fighting for her life in intensive care, needed “extensive medical treatment” and had not yet been able to return to school.

The Recorder of York, Judge Sean Morris, said Lofthouse was “self-obsessed and selfish” and that he shouldn’t have been riding the bike at all.

He didn’t have a licence or insurance, and York Crown Court heard he knew the motorcycle had mechanical defects.

“To an extent the accident is your fault because had you not broken the law, and kept off your motorbike, it would never have happened,” the judge said.

The girl had stepped into the road behind a bus while looking at her mobile phone.

Lofthouse, 30, of Askham Croft, Acomb, admitted perverting the course of justice, failure to stop, driving without insurance or a licence and cannabis dealing.

He was jailed for two years and 10 months and banned from driving for 29 months.

For Lofthouse, Denise Breen-Lawton said: “There have been far reaching repercussions for him and his family in the community” because of the collision.

He had panicked after the collision and that had led to him hiding evidence and lying about his involvement.

“He has been awake all night and was obviously thinking of this case last night and him going to prison.

“He has not been able to stop thinking about this case since it happened last year.”

He had voluntarily gone to police in September to confess his involvement in the accident.

Lofthouse wrote a four-page email to the court which the judge told him “talks about you and you alone”.

The judge also said Lofthouse would also have been thinking about the cannabis in his bike when he decided to leave the scene.

Ms Addy said Lofthouse wouldn’t have seen the girl in time to avoid the collision.

He was formally acquitted of charges of causing serious injury by dangerous driving and dangerous driving.

Inspector Jeremy Bartley, of North Yorkshire Police’s major collision investigation team, said: “This is one of the most serious criminal collisions we have investigated recently, and one of the most complicated to investigate.

“Rather than acting like a grown man, Lofthouse did the most cowardly thing possible – he left a young girl lying on the road with a fractured skull, made his getaway and tried to hide the evidence that he knew would incriminate him.

“Fortunately, many people out there did the right thing and responded to our appeal, sharing information with us. They were appalled to read about what happened and I’d like to thank everyone who got in touch. This information was fed directly into our investigation and it helped us massively.

“This has been a harrowing and drawn-out ordeal for the girl who Lofthouse injured – who has done exceptionally well in her recovery – and her family. But I hope today’s outcome gives them some comfort as they move on with their lives.”

In a family statement, the victim’s mother said: “I would like to thank everyone who helped police in their investigation to catch Lofthouse, the people who were there with my daughter at the time of the collision, the four paramedics who attended the scene and family and friends for their continued support. Our lives have changed forever.”