Driver jailed for deaths in head-on crash on A10 in Cambridgeshire

Andrew Thornewell (left) and Timothy Wildbore (right) were killed in the collision Image copyright Cambridgeshire Police
Image caption Andrew Thornewell (left) and Timothy Wildbore (right) were killed in the collision

A driver who crashed head-on into a car, killing two people, has been jailed for five years.

Mitchell Butler-Eldridge, 28, had been trying to overtake a lorry before a bend on the A10 in Cambridgeshire on 18 February 2015.

He lost control of his Volkswagen Passat and collided with a Mini.

Butler-Eldridge, of Sydney Terrace, King's Lynn, pleaded guilty to two counts of causing death by dangerous driving at a previous hearing.

'Death wish'

The driver of the Mini, Timothy Wildbore, 24, from Victoria Street, Littleport, and his passenger, Andrew Thornewell, 28, from Hollendale Walk, Ely, both died in the crash.

Witnesses described a vehicle overtaking a series of cars and lorries along a five-mile stretch of the 60mph single-carriageway between Littleport and Downham Market.

Prosecutor Sally Hobson told the court that one witness described the driver as being on a "death wish", and another said the motorist was a "bit of a lunatic".

One driver said he and an oncoming motorist were forced to take avoiding action to prevent a crash with the overtaking vehicle in an earlier incident.

Ms Hobson said the car veered back into the oncoming carriageway, smashing head-on into a Mini.

Ian Bridge, mitigating, said Butler-Eldridge was normally a "careful driver". A letter read out in court said: "From the deepest depths of my heart, I'm truly sorry for being the cause of this accident."

Butler-Eldridge was sentenced to five years in prison and disqualified from driving for five years, with the ban to start when he is released from prison.

PC James Thorne, from the Cambridgeshire Road Policing Unit, said: "Butler-Eldridge made a conscious decision to overtake a vehicle when it was clearly dangerous to do so. This incident was clearly avoidable and I welcome the sentence passed."

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