Cyclist jailed for killing woman while riding on pavement
McGinn had mounted the pavement in order to cut the corner of the junction of Wonastow Road and Somerset Road, and would not have been able to see pedestrians when he made the turn.
At a hearing at Cardiff Crown Court on Thursday, McGinn admitted one count of causing bodily harm by wanton or furious driving under the Offences Against the Person Act 1861.
The court heard he had no lights on his bike, only one working brake and failed to stop to assist Ms Stone, despite her friend Janet Bromley’s plea for help as he rode away.
In a statement, Ms Bromley said the victim was hit so hard that she had been lifted off her feet and then “pole-axed” to the ground.
Ms Bromley added: “I heard an almighty crack as the back of her head hit the pavement.”
As McGinn road off, Ms Bromley called after him: “I’m on my own, please stop, come back and help me.”
She said her friend was initially conscious and trying to lift herself but her eyes started rolling and she began to vomit up blood.
Ms Stone died four days later in hospital from a combination of her serious head injury and bronchial pneumonia.
Her family described her as a healthy and active woman who enjoyed swimming and yoga and “who loved life and lived it to the fullest”.
McGinn handed himself in to police on June 17 and initially claimed he had clipped the victim with the handlebars of his bike while riding close to the pavement.
He said he had picked her up and apologised before riding away but later admitted his guilt, telling police “panic” had caused him to lie in interview.
The court heard that McGinn was on an errand to the shops for his mother-in-law when he hit Ms Stone.
He has previous endorsements on his driving licence for driving without insurance and for a faulty tyre.
‘Disregard for the rules of the road’
Jailing McGinn for 12 months, Judge Tracey Lloyd-Clarke said that he had shown a “flagrant disregard for the rules of the road which apply to cyclists as well as motorists”.
She said he had taken the “deliberate decision” to mount the pavement knowing that he could not see round the corner and that anyone coming in the opposite direction would have “absolutely no chance” of avoiding him.
Judge Lloyd-Clarke also banned McGinn from driving for two-and-a-half years, and ordered the forfeiture of the mountain bike he was riding when he hit Ms Stone.
Ryan Randall, of the Crown Prosecution Service, said: “The way in which McGinn rode his bike around the corner was completely irresponsible.
“His disregard for the safety of others using the pavement proved to be disastrous and is a stark reminder that pedal cycles can be dangerous to other road users when ridden so recklessly.
“Our thoughts are with those who have suffered the tragic loss of Ms Stone.”
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Yet a motorist can kill someone and get off with a ban and a fine. It’s about time causing death while driving was treated a bit more seriously than just another motoring offence.