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Hit-and-run motorist jailed for six years for killing cyclist had never taken driving test

Driver claimed he fled scene because he was “in shock and wanted to get home”

A hit-and-run motorist who has been jailed for six years for killing a cyclist had never taken a driving test.

Liam Dellaway, aged 25, crashed into 68-year-old James Parsons, from Letchworth, on 19 September last year in Icknefield, Hertfordshire, reports BBC News.

St Albans Crown Court heard that Mr Parsons, who died the following day in hospital, was “left for dead” as Dellaway fled the scene despite his windscreen being smashed in the collision.

Later the same day, Dellaway sold the car, which was registered in his girlfriend’s name, for £500, telling the purchaser that damage to the windscreen and roof had been caused by men with baseball bats.

At trial, where he pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving, he claimed he had driven off because he was “in shock and wanted to get home.”

He also entered guilty pleas to causing death by driving whilst disqualified, causing death while uninsured, and two counts of leaving petrol stations without paying for fuel.

The court heard that Dellaway had pulled out to overtake another vehicle he had been tailgating when he crashed into Mr Parsons from behind on a bend.

Peter Shaw, prosecuting, said: "Marks on the road show Dellaway braked heavily after the collision obviously realising he had struck someone, but then fled the scene."

Shortly afterwards, an oncoming driver had to execute an emergency stop when Dellaway overtook two other vehicles and a bus.

Dellaway, who was arrested on 19 October, a month after the fatal collision, had previously committed a number of other road traffic offences.

Judge Nigel Lithman QC, sentencing him to six years’ imprisonment, told him: “You made no attempt to get help or show the remotest human concern for this man.”

He also banned him from driving for six years, after which Dellaway will have to take an extended driving test to secure a licence.

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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