Craig Mossop, of Hartington Road, was sentenced to nine years today (Monday 16 November 2020) at Bolton Crown Court after previously pleading guilty to five driving offences, including death by dangerous driving.
The court heard how on the afternoon of Sunday 23 August 2020, Mossop began a seven-mile journey in his blue Land Rover TD4 from his partner’s house to his home address.
At the time, Mossop was without insurance and a driving licence. He was also under the influence of alcohol.
CCTV shown to the court shows Mossop driving recklessly on the approach to Chorley Street, where Susan Jackson – a nurse for 30 years – was meeting her husband after being out on a run.
Mossop is seen in the preceding moments to enter White Lion Brow and nearly collide with the railings on the opposite side of the road and then mounting a kerb after failing to negotiate the bend from Spa Road.
When travelling down Chorley Street, Mossop was again on the pavement and remained there for approximately forty metres before hitting Mrs Jackson while driving at 53mph in a 30 zone.
Despite just colliding with his victim, Mossop continued to travel to the end of the road and flouted a red light at the busy junction of St George’s Road, Chorley New Road and Chorley Old Road, where he struck a 36-year-old man in the pedestrian island and caused serious injuries.
Members of the public stopped Mossop from driving away after he had tried to reverse back on the road – nearly hitting the pedestrian a second time.
Mossop was detained by passers-by until police arrived on the scene and arrested him.
After a breath sample reading of 51 micrograms per 100 millilitres of breath – over twice the legal limit – he was subsequently charged with causing death by dangerous driving; causing serious injury by dangerous driving; drink driving; driving with no insurance; driving with no driving license.
He pleaded guilty to all five offences and was today sentenced to nine years in jail.
Detective Constable Emma Kennedy, of GMP’s Serious Collision Investigation Unit, said: “Mrs Jackson’s husband received the most unimaginable news that his wife had been killed just a few yards away from where they were due to meet that terrible day and then had to return home to inform Mrs Jackson’s two daughters, whilst supported by the police.
“Mrs Jackson’s family have acted with dignity and respect which is in contrast to the behaviour displayed by Craig Mossop that day; he showed no regard or respect for other road users, pedestrians and the law.
“Mrs Jackson and Mr Devaney were pedestrians and should have been safe on the pavement and at a pedestrian crossing. But instead, both were mown down by this dangerous driver as he mounted the pavement and drove at Mrs Jackson at 53 mph then drove through a pedestrian island and collided with Mr Devaney.
“I would like to thank the members of the public who provided first aid and those who stopped Craig Mossop from trying to drive away.
“That day was a warm, sunny afternoon and it shows that those who drive after drinking alcohol are not confined to night-time driving or drink-driving over the festive period.
“Drivers need to consider the effects of drink-driving and think again when deciding to drive after having an alcoholic drink. The impact on innocent victims, their families, people who witness these events and also the impact on their own families is just not worth the risk.”
Mrs Jackson’s family were present at the sentencing hearing and her husband Graham released the following statement: “The family and friends of Sue would like to take this opportunity to firstly thank everyone who came forward to assist the police in their investigation. We would like to especially thank those who tried to assist Sue in providing first aid. We know that this has had an overwhelming effect on everyone who came across this horrific incident.
“Sue was a wife, mother, sister, Aunt, friend and nurse. Sue had 30 years of nursing experience and was a specialist nurse treating those with lung cancer. She was well respected by her colleagues and loved by her patients.
“I now have to live without my soulmate and Sue’s girls have to live without their mother, having already lost their dad. Our lives will never be the same again.
“Craig Mossop acted selfishly and irresponsibly. He drove whilst drunk and killed Sue. His prison sentence is insufficient to the sentence we have as a family and for taking a life that was so precious.
“We will never offer forgiveness to him. He has taken away the most important person in our lives.
“We do have a future as a family and we won’t fester away with hatred or bitterness. We will live the rest of our lives enriched by having loved and being loved by Sue.”