A POLICE probe has been launched into why a killer driver was not breathalysed when he was stopped by officers hours before a death smash.
It has now emerged that an investigation is being carried out to establish why Steven Hey, 30 was not breath tested when he was stopped by police under two-and-a-half hours before the fatal collision on the A64, near Scarborough, which killed Dorothy Brookes, from Blackhall.
Car passenger Mrs Brookes, 80, was described as a “stalwart” of her family who had been “magnificent” in her community throughout the miners’ strike.
She was killed when Hey’s Vauxhall Astra ploughed into a caravan attached to her son’s Ford Mondeo on the A64 at Ganton on May 27 last year.
The force of the collision was so great that the caravan lurched up into the air and landed on the Mondeo.
York Crown Court heard that Hey – who has been jailed for six years – was earlier pulled over at Seamer, near Scarborough, at 10.50am after members of the public reported his poor driving to police.
An officer checked the vehicle and Hey’s documents and then allowed him on his way with a “friendly warning” about his driving, the court heard.
But the judge was told that back calculations later showed that at the time of the accident, at 1.15pm, Hey, who had been drinking until 5am that day, had been almost twice the legal alcohol limit for driving.
This was found through a blood test from the defendant in hospital where he had been taken following the crash for a number of injuries, including a broken jaw.
Today a spokeswoman for North Yorkshire Police confirmed an inquiry was being held into the case.
She said: “North Yorkshire Police’s Professional Standards Department are carrying out an investigation into the previous police contact with Mr Hey on the day of the collision.
“As it is still ongoing it would not be appropriate to provide any further comment until this investigation has concluded.”
The Recorder of York, Judge Stephen Ashurst described Hey’s decision to drive after having had no sleep and after drinking bottles of lager and vodka and red bull cocktails as “outrageous” and said that he must have known that he was not fit to get behind the wheel.
He added that Hey had also ignored a warning, knowing that he had been drinking when he was pulled over by the police officer, and must have been “astonished” at not being asked to provide a breath sample.
The judge added that it was not up to him to comment on that part of the case, it being up to others to investigate what had happened at the roadside.
Hey, of Shelley Drive, Barnsley, South Yorkshire, admitted dangerous driving but was not charged with drink driving.
Mrs Brookes’ son, Keith, who was driving the Mondeo, and her 12-year-old great-granddaughter, who was also a passenger in the car, were both injured.