Family of Christina Barchetti call for law change on baby deaths

Calvin Connah Calvin Connah was jailed for five years for causing the death of Christina Barchetti by dangerous driving

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The family of a mother-to-be who died with her unborn daughter in a road crash are calling for a change in the law to recognise stillborn baby deaths.

Calvin Craig Connah, 22, of Leeswood, Flintshire, was jailed for five years on Thursday for causing the death of hospital worker Christina Barchetti.

Her family and partner want him charged for the death of her unborn baby Bella - but the law does not allow it.

They say they will fight for a change in legislation.

Connah denied causing death by dangerous driving in October 2012, but was convicted following a trial in December.

The court heard he was driving his father's BMW and overtook another car at the end of a 70mph (112km) dual carriageway.

But he braked hard as the road became a single carriageway and entered bends through a wood.

Start Quote

He was not charged with the death of Baby Bella... she did not have a chance to take one breath in the outside world”

End Quote Graham Clarke Ms Barchetti's partner

He lost control of the car which crashed virtually head on into a Ford Ka being driven by Miss Barchetti, 35, from Wrexham.

She died at Wrexham Maelor Hospital where she worked, and her baby daughter Bella was stillborn during an emergency Caesarean operation.

Judge Philip Hughes said there were a number of aggravating features in the case, including excessive speed and aggressive and intimidating driving.

He added he had taken into account that two lives were lost when sentencing Connah.

But Miss Barchetti's partner Graham Clarke said the family felt baby Bella's death did not appear to count in the eyes of the law.

"We are working with our local MP to get the law changed over stillborn deaths," he said.

Lost control

"This person was only charged with one death, that of Christina.

"He was not charged with the death of baby Bella even though she was born by Caesarean section and we held her in our arms.

"She did not have a chance to take one breath in the outside world."

He said they would take their fight to the House of Commons.

Connah claimed he had driven no faster than 60mph (96km) on the dual carriageway and said he lost control on the bend at 50mph because of weather conditions.

But witnesses told how he sped along the dual carriageway at an excessive speed. An accident investigator estimated that he must have been travelling at about 85mph before the crash.

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