Jason MacAdam secures acquittal in causing serious injury by dangerous driving trial

October 18, 2018

Jason MacAdam from Exchange Chambers has secured an acquittal for his client in a causing serious injury by dangerous driving trial.

Pensioner Anthony Lonton, 78, was found not guilty of causing serious injury to two women by dangerous driving following a Lakes road horror smash.

A jury at Carlisle Crown Court heard about the “dreadful consequences” of a head-on, two-vehicle collision on the A591 at Thirlmere in July, 2015.

Mr Lonton was driving a Kia Cee’d which veered into the path of an oncoming Seat Altea at 5.30pm.

His passenger and friend, Sybil Parker, suffered a “catalogue” of injuries and was detained in hospital for two months.  38 weeks’ pregnant Seat passenger Rebecca Pattinson lost the baby daughter she was carrying.

Experts concluded the most plausible cause of the crash was Mr Lonton falling asleep at the wheel.

Giving evidence during his trial, Mr Lonton accepted he must have done, “momentarily, for a micro-second”.

But he described the painstaking attempts he made in the months after the crash to discover why that happened. He underwent an ECG, blood tests, a CT scan and respiratory testing.

He agreed the crash was “quite clearly my fault”, and accepted Seat driver, Gareth Pattinson, was “totally innocent”.

But in evidence, retired academic Mr Lonton “very strongly” disagreed with the prosecution’s accusation that he drove that day despite knowing he was too tired to do so safely.

An active and healthy man of good character, Mr Lonton, denied two charges alleging that he caused serious injury to the two females by dangerous driving.

A jury of six men and six women found him not guilty of both allegations having heard all evidence in the case.

Jason MacAdam was instructed by M & A Solicitors in York. Jason is a member of the criminal team at Exchange Chambers.