Sleaford motorist, 85, admits causing death of Boston motorcyclist

An 85-year-old man with an ‘unblemished’ driving record has been given a suspended prison sentence after admitting driving carelessly and causing the death of a 33-year-old Boston motorcyclist last summer.

Boston Magistrates' Court.
Boston Magistrates' Court.

Anthony Pearce, of Boston Road, Sleaford, was said to have been involved in the collision on the A1121 at Broadsides at 9.11pm on August 30.

Prosecuting at Boston Magistrates Court, Kate Minehane said Pearce was driving his Skoda Kodiaq car west on the A1121 and was overtaking a lorry when he collided with the motorcycle being driven by Mr McCulloch, who was travelling in the opposite direction.

She said it was a single carriageway and was dark at the time with no street lights, but both the lorry driver and the driver of another car which overtook the lorry before Pearce, said they had clearly seen the motorcycle travelling towards them.

Ms Minehane said Pearce ‘made a conscious decision to overtake and at the time of the collision was on the wrong side of the road’.

Mitigating, Michael Alexander said that ‘no words could express the sympathy’ Pearce had for the family of Mr McCulloch.

He said the car which overtook the lorry before Pearce ‘effectively blocked his view of the motorcycle for a short time’ but he said he admitted he ‘should have seen him’.

Mr Alexander said there was no suggestion of excessive speed, nor was he on his phone or under the influence of drink or drugs at the time.

He said it was an estimated lack of attention of about four seconds.

In a prepared statement, Pearce told the court that if he could turn back time, he would.

He said he had been driving for 60 years and had driven nearly a million miles in the past 40 years with no accidents and no points on his licence.

“Never in my worst nightmares did I imagine I would be in an accident of this sort,” he said.

“I do not know why I did not see him. I will carry the guilt with me for the rest of my life.”

The magistrates offered their condolences to the family of Mr McCulloch.

They said they recognised there were ‘no aggravating features’ but that it was past the custodial threshold.

They sentenced Pearce to 20 weeks in custody but suspended it for a year.

He was banned from driving for 18 months and ordered to pay £205 in court costs and charges.