Teenage driver jailed for causing the death of his RAF officer friend after crashing in a Harborough district village

The crash happened just days before last Christmas

By Red Williams
Monday, 16th August 2021, 10:31 am

A teenage driver who caused the death of his RAF officer friend when he crashed in a Harborough district village has been jailed for 15 months.

Brennan Carpenter, 19, was jailed after the horrific fatal smash in Willoughby Waterleys, near Broughton Astley, just days before last Christmas.

His close friend Thomas Gamble, 18, a serving RAF officer, was critically injured in the accident – and died just hours later.

Brennan Carpenter was jailed after the horrific fatal smash in Willoughby Waterleys, near Broughton Astley, just days before last Christmas.

Carpenter was driving along Willoughby Road on Sunday December 20 last year when his Ford Fiesta suddenly careered off the road, overturned and landed in a brook.

He had been travelling at “excessive speed” and failed to slow down when he approached a bend in the road.

As a result Carpenter, who was carrying three passengers, hit a concrete post, a court heard.

Front seat passenger Thomas Gamble suffered terrible injuries and died in hospital a few hours later.

The two other passengers sustained minor injuries.

Carpenter, of Evans Avenue, Broughton Astley, admitted causing death by careless driving at a hearing at Leicester magistrates’ court last month.

He was jailed for 15 months at the court last Friday (August 13).

Carpenter was also banned from driving for three years.

The ban will begin when he’s released from prison.

Today Det Sgt Ed Des-Chanelle, of Leicestershire Police’s Serious Collision Investigation Unit, said: “Yet again, we see a young life lost due to the careless actions of another.

“Thomas was a RAF officer with a promising career ahead of him.

“His loss will be suffered by his family and friends for ever.

“We are pleased Carpenter pleaded guilty to the charges laid before him and spared the family the ordeal of hearing the evidence in court.

“While it will never ease the pain, the fact Carpenter has taken responsibility for his actions will hopefully bring them some peace.”

He added: “The incident and investigation also had a massive impact on the officers who dealt with it, many of whom had children of similar ages themselves.

“Putting their feelings aside they dealt with the families with the upmost sensitivity, guiding them through the investigation and subsequent judicial process.

“We hope that the sentence passed today gives Carpenter the time to reflect on his careless behaviour and think about his actions in the future.

“Speeding is one of the four main contributors to road death and serious injury on our roads.

“We are constantly trying to deter and educate drivers from such careless driving, putting their lives and the lives of others at risk.

“There is no excuse for speeding and we will arrest and prosecute those who believe they are above the law.”