Family's plea over hit-and-run crash

THE family of a 20-year-old crash victim whose back was broken in four places last night made an emotional appeal for a hit-and-run motorist to come forward.

THE family of a 20-year-old crash victim whose back was broken in four places last night made an emotional appeal for a hit-and-run motorist to come forward.

James Hunt was driven off the road by a silver hatchback that had overtaken his Mini Cooper in Birchwood Road, Dedham, at 2.10pm on Easter Sunday.

It is believed the driver of the hatchback saw a vehicle approaching and cut back in front of Mr Hunt's car, clipping its rear passenger wheel and causing it to hit a roadside verge.

The Mini then ricocheted into the path of an oncoming minibus. The impact of the collision caused Mr Hunt to be thrown from his car, which flipped in the process.

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Although a number of witnesses stopped to help at the scene, the hatchback continued on its journey.

Last night, with Mr Hunt facing the prospect of spending weeks in Colchester General Hospital to receive treatment for his injuries, his family pleaded with the anonymous driver to contact police.

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Lesley, Mr Hunt's mother, said: “We're not after revenge or anything like that but it would be nice to move forward.”

Kevin Findlay, his stepfather, added: “We're not on a witch-hunt.

“It would make things easier from James' point of view if the person responsible came forward. It would be much better from the driver's point of view too if he contacted the police himself.”

Mr Hunt, a trainee accountant, is currently undergoing scans as doctors work out the best way to treat his injuries.

Mr Findlay said: “He has got feeling in his toes and legs but the doctors are worried there might be the potential for further damage if he's not dealt with in the proper manner.

“Once they've done all the scans they can make an informed decision on how to treat him.”

Mr Hunt, who attended Philip Morant School, Colchester, is facing six weeks lying on his back as part of the recovery process and further eight weeks wearing a collar. A decision on whether to operate has yet to be made.

Mr Findlay said his stepson has no recollection of the crash itself, which happened just minutes after he left home, in Boxhouse Lane, Dedham. The keen golfer was on his way to the driving range at the time.

He said: “The last thing James remembers is putting his clubs in the back of his car.

“He has been in fairly good spirits but is very tired. His main concern when he heard a minibus was involved was that no one else was hurt.”

Mrs Hunt said: “He was much better yesterday than the day before.

“He has got a lot of questions. He is looking to the future and getting better. He is frustrated but philosophical.”

The driver of the hatchback was described as a man of large build and the female passenger was a blond woman.

The occupants of the vehicle, or anyone else with information about the crash, are asked to contact Stanway road policing unit on 01206 762512.

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