Devon

Speeding motorist jailed for causing teenager's death

Brandon Martin Image copyright Devon and Cornwall Police
Image caption Brandon Martin was hailed as a "popular young man" in tributes paid to him at the time

A speeding motorist has been jailed for 18 months after causing the death of a 16-year-old boy.

Jordan Sturcbecher, 20, was driving at 70mph (110km/h) in a 40mph (65km/h) zone when he crashed in Cullompton, Devon, on 21 October 2018.

Passenger Brandon Martin was killed when the car overturned and hit a tree stump, Exeter Crown Court heard.

Sturcbecher, of Orchard Way, Cullompton, admitted causing death by dangerous driving.

He had previously denied the charge but changed his plea seven weeks before his trial, which had been scheduled for 4 May.

Image copyright Devon and Cornwall Police
Image caption Jordan Sturcbecher, 20, admitted causing the death of the teenager as he drove at 70mph in a 40mph zone

The crash happened at about 01:50 BST at Five Bridges, close to the Diggerland tourist attraction where the teenager had been working.

Sturcbecher and Mr Martin had met up with fellow car enthusiasts in Exeter earlier that evening, and had decided to go out for one final drive, Exeter Crown Court heard.

'Gone forever'

The court was told Sturcbecher crossed a solid white line to overtake a friend travelling ahead, causing the car to hit a bank and a tree stump on the passenger side where Mr Martin was sitting.

His mother Helen Martin said: "To lose him at just 16 has devastated us. The weight crushes us with every beat of our hearts.

"We woke every day to find that our child is gone forever. We have lost our angel."

Sentencing, Judge David Evans told Sturcbecher: "Inexperienced or not, the recklessness of your approach to that bend was plain.

"You may have been overconfident about your ability to handle the car, as many young men are, but the mitigating power of that is small."

The 20-year-old was also banned from driving for three years.

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