Bury St Edmunds: Pedestrian in fatal collision ‘seen too late’

A MOTHER-OF-FOUR whose car was involved in a fatal collision with an 87-year-old woman has told a court she did not see her until she was in front of her car.

Louise McLaren had just dropped her son at Bury Rugby Club in Rougham Road, Bury St Edmunds, for football training and was on her way home with her other three children when her Vauxhall Zafira collided with Joan Pointer, who was using a walking frame, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

Giving evidence on the second day of her trial, McLaren said that as she left the rugby club and approached the junction with Rougham Road she stopped at “Give Way” lines.

When she did not see anyone coming she had moved forward to the mouth of the junction, intending to turn left along Rougham Road.

As she waited for a gap in the traffic she saw an approaching bus slow down and thought the driver was letting her out, although she accepted he had not flashed his lights or waved his hand at her.

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She then looked to her left and double checked to the right to make sure the bus driver was slowing down before “edging forward very, very slowly” in first gear.

Asked by her barrister Andrew Shaw: “When did you first see Mrs Pointer?” McLaren replied: “When she was in front of my car.”

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She said that following the collision she and her three children had all been very distressed as had been Mrs Pointer’s husband John who witnessed the accident.

McLaren, 38, of Raedwald Road, Bury St Edmunds, has denied causing Mrs Pointer’s death by careless driving on March 2 last year.

The court has heard that as Mrs Pointer walked in front of McLaren’s Vauxhall Zafira the vehicle had moved forward trapping Mrs Pointer’s foot and walking frame under the car and causing her to hit her head on the road.

Mrs Pointer, of Southgate Close, Bury St Edmunds, died in hospital the next day.

Godfried Duah, prosecuting, has claimed that McLaren should have seen Mrs Pointer. “She was there to be seen. Had she (McLaren) looked to her left and in front of the vehicle before pulling out she would have seen her,” he told the jury.

The jury is expected to retire to consider its verdict today.

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