Nottingham

Car thief jailed for killing former magistrate

Gavin Collins Mansfield Woodhouse manslaughter Image copyright Nottinghamshire Police
Image caption Gavin Collins was found not guilty of murder but guilty of manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility

A man who killed an 87-year-old by running over him in a stolen car has been jailed for 21 years.

Gavin Collins, 39, killed Terry Radford near his home in Mansfield Woodhouse on Good Friday last year.

Nottingham Crown Court heard the killer went on a rampage the day after being released from custody.

During sentencing, Judge Stuart Rafferty QC said Collins had caused "a trail of havoc" during "a psychotic episode".

Collins has since been diagnosed with "schizophrenia or a schizoaffective disorder", the judge added.

He had previously been charged with murder, but a jury found him guilty of manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility.

Image copyright Family handout
Image caption Terry Radford was taking a morning walk when he was hit by a car

Collins had crashed two stolen cars and smashed into a home to steal the car that killed Mr Radford.

In a statement last year, Mr Radford's family said he was "the most wonderful dad and granddad who was loved and respected by everyone".

They said the former teacher, councillor and magistrate was "finally getting his life back" after looking after his partner, who had dementia, and had been looking forward to a series of holidays.

"Now he won't get to live out those dreams and his family and wide circle of friends won't get to share more great times with him," they said.

Judge Rafferty said: "Ultimately, a perfectly decent man who had a long time still to live and much to live for, lost his life.

"All of that took place at a time when you clearly were undergoing a psychotic episode."

The judge added: "Within a day of being released from custody on a home detention curfew, you embarked on a course of conduct which can fairly be described as a trail of havoc."

Image caption A police car was also rammed near the bus stop where Terry Radford was killed

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