Barnham man jailed for causing death by careless driving

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A man has been jailed for causing the death of a driver during a head-on collision in Thetford in 2012.

Darius Gelezauskas had pleaded guilty to causing death by careless driving and today, at Norwich Crown Court, he was sentenced to 14 months imprisonment.

The court heard that he was driving an Audi A6 on the A134, near to Barnham Cross Common, just before 6am on December 3, 2012, when he crossed into the path of a VW Golf travelling in the opposite direction and hit it head on.

He then collided with an Alfa Romeo.

The driver of the Golf, Timothy Edwards, 61, of Olle Close, Bury St Edmunds, died at the scene.

Gelezauskas, his two passengers and the Alfa Romeo driver all suffered minor injuries.

A forensic investigation found no faults with any of the vehicles that could have caused the collision.

Gelezauskas offered no explanation as to why he had crossed to the wrong side of the road, but the conditions were poor with rain at the time, the court heard.

Gelezauskas, 46, of Portal Close, Barnham, was also banned from driving for two years.

A statement from Mr Edwards’ family, issued soon after his death, said: “Tim was a much loved husband of Julie, father to Sarah, Maria and Terry, brother to Terry and devoted granddad to Mia.

“He was a sociable character, well known in town through both his love of real ale and his days as a rhythm guitarist with Tutch and later Nelsons Column.

“Recently Tim was self-employed but he had previously had a successful career as a qualified engineer starting at Woollatt and Mitchell and going on to work as a buyer at Vitality Bulbs, Heeco and AMOT Controls.”

Speaking after today’s hearing, Steve Matthews, of the Norfolk Police Serious Collision Investigation Team, said: “A momentary lapse in concentration in poor weather has turned lives upside down. Tim Edwards’s family are now without a husband, father, brother and granddad, and whilst Darius Gelezauskas’s sentence is finite, he must live with the knowledge that his careless driving has caused this loss.

“This case should serve as a reminder to all drivers to stay alert, drive to the conditions and be aware of your surroundings. This was a journey Gelezauskas regularly made but on that day 13 months ago, it had a tragic ending. I would like to extend my sympathies to Mr Edwards’s family at this difficult time.”