Police officer could not have avoided colliding with teenager, inquest hears
An officer whose car hit and killed a 19-year-old at the end of a police pursuit could not have avoided the collision, an expert investigator told an inquest.
Disqualified driver Kelvin Bainbridge, who was wanted by the police for burglary, exited his Nissan Primera while it was still moving following a six-minute pursuit through Spennymoor, County Durham, in October 2019.
He stumbled and fell under the front valance of the marked police BMW.
Mr Bainbridge suffered blunt head injuries that were fatal.
An inquest in Crook has heard Mr Bainbridge had attended a hospital scan with his pregnant partner that morning and had found out they were due to have a baby boy.
The police driver did not have enough time to react to stop this happening
His mother had also attended the scan and was in the car, screaming at her son to slow down, and to the police to stop the pursuit, prior to the fatal crash.
Expert collision investigator Robin Turner told the inquest on Tuesday that he had studied police in-car video footage as well as detailed technical data recordings of the vehicle’s movements, as the hearing focused on the final seconds before impact.
Mr Turner said Mr Bainbridge appeared to begin exiting the Nissan 1.2 seconds before the collision, and he was fully out of the vehicle around 0.92 seconds before.
The police driver, who was manoeuvring to the side of the Nissan, did apply the brakes before impact but the front of the car went over Mr Bainbridge, who had stumbled.
Mr Turner told the inquest: “He (the police driver) did not have enough time to react to stop this happening.”
Mr Bainbridge’s Nissan collided with a wall, as did the police vehicle after it mounted a kerb, the inquest heard.
The hearing continues.
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