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Woman who caused death of baby by dangerous driving sentenced

News   •   Jan 19, 2018 21:14 GMT

A mother who was convicted of causing the death of her baby girl was given a two year suspended prison sentence at the Old Bailey on Friday, 19 January.

Chidinma Okwudili Anya, 45, (14/06/1972) was driving her elder child, aged three at the time, and 18-month-old Eugenia, when her car was involved in a collision with a van on King's Highway, Greenwich on 11 November 2015.

Eugenie died in hospital on the evening of 22 November 2015.

Anya was sentenced to 24 months' imprisonment for causing death by dangerous driving, and nine months' imprisonment for causing serious injury by dangerous driving in relation to the van driver, to run concurrently. Both sentences were suspended for two years.

The judge also imposed a rehabilitation requirement on Anya lasting twenty days from 12 January, and she was put under a tagged curfew for two months that runs between 21:00hrs and 06:00hrs. She was also disqualified from driving for ten years, and will need to undertake an extended driving test were she ever to reapply to get her licence back.

Police were called to the location of the crash at 12:21hrs on 11 November 2015, along with London Ambulance Service, London's Air Ambulance and the London Fire Brigade.

Anya and both children were taken to hospital, as well as the van driver, for treatment. The van driver required a hospital operation and a lengthy spell for recovery.

Anya was subsequently interviewed under caution and summonsed to Bromley Magistrates' Court on 31 July 2017. She then attended the Old Bailey on 29 August, 2017, where she pleaded guilty to the two offences.

The court heard that Anya had epilepsy and as such was under obligation to consult with her doctor and the DVLA before driving. However she had assured the DVLA that she had no medical conditions. It also emerged that Eugenia had not been put in a seat deemed suitable for a baby - but one designed for an older, much bigger child.

The officer who led the investigation for the Serious Collision Investigation Unit, DC Suzanne Gates, said:

"This is a tragic case where a mother's actions have led to the death of her young baby and put into serious danger the life of her other child and the van driver she collided with.

"This case draws attention to the importance of ensuring that the correct child safety restraints are used whilst travelling on the roads."