Driver guilty of hit and run death crash
A GRIEVING girlfriend watched the man who caused her partner's death sent to jail and said: "Now I can give our son some answers."Nikki Page was speaking after Martin Law, a 22-year-old from Haverhill, was found guilty of the New Year's Day hit-and-run that killed Wayne Goode, her fiance and father of her two-year-old son, Sonny.
By Jonathan Barnes
A GRIEVING girlfriend watched the man who caused her partner's death sent to jail and said: "Now I can give our son some answers."
Nikki Page was speaking after Martin Law, a 22-year-old from Haverhill, was found guilty of the New Year's Day hit-and-run that killed Wayne Goode, her fiance and father of her two-year-old son, Sonny.
Unemployed Law claimed not to have been behind the wheel of the Transit van that fatally struck Mr Goode, 28, on the A134 road as he walked from the Saracen's Head pub, in Newton Green, in the early hours of the morning.
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But a jury at Ipswich Crown Court yesterday took two hours to find him guilty of causing death by dangerous driving and he was sent to prison for four years.
Last night, Miss Page, of BroomhillRoad, Ipswich, said: "I am as pleased as I can be – I had no doubt he was guilty.
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"Even though he didn't have the courage to admit what he had done, at least now I can give my son some answers about his father.
"They are not the answers I wanted, because he didn't have the courage to admit it, but it is something.
"The police did a fantastic job right the way through and I was always confident they had the right man."
The 29-year-old, who works in a clothing store, added she had "no feelings" towards Law or his family.
Sentencing Law, Judge John Devaux told him: "Your behaviour was appalling. You had consumed a lot of alcohol and you were unable to take avoiding action that sober drivers were able to take.
"You didn't stay there to face the music, help the authorities or even check if he was still alive."
Judge Devaux said he had no doubt Law was "responsible for or party to" a fire that destroyed the green Ford Transit van a few days after the accident.
The court heard Mr Goode had spent the night at the Saracen's Head pub with Miss Page and two friends and left alone at about 1am, having drunk some red wine, with the apparent intention of walking home to Ipswich.
Witnesses told the trial that Mr Goode, a shop manager, was "staggering" across the A134 and was nearly hit by other motorists.
He was struck by Law's van at about 2.40am and was found injured in the road by a passing motorist. Mr Goode died at the scene from multiple injuries.
Law, of Sandpiper Close, denied causing death by dangerous driving and said he had been drinking with friends in Haverhill on New Year's Eve.
He denied being the vehicle's only owner and claimed he was not behind the wheel on the night of the fatal accident.
But CCTV footage captured him buying a sandwich from a petrol station forecourt in Sudbury just minutes before the accident.
The court was told that Law had passed his driving test, but never applied for a full licence.
He had previous driving convictions for speeding and having no insurance, as well as juvenile court offences of criminal damage and dishonesty.
Judge Devaux told Law: "It is one view that it is unfortunate for you that he (Mr Goode) was on the road that night. But it was far more unfortunate for him that you were on the road that night."
Originally from Kidderminster, Worcestershire, Mr Goode and Miss Page moved to Ipswich in December 2001 for him to take up a job as manager of the town's Primark store.
In the days following his death, Miss Page and Mr Goode's mother Sheila made an emotional public appeal for information about the accident.