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Mum’s heartbreaking tribute to ‘gentle’ son killed as he walked to the shops by driver who drank 10 pints

“Nothing can prepare you for the devastation and emptiness you feel when you are told that your child… will never come home,” the victim’s mum said

A driver who drank 10 pints before mounting a kerb and killing a student had been jailed for ten years.

Gabriel Fields, 19, was killed instantly when he was struck by the Audi S3.

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The vehicle was being driven by David Turner, 31, who was described by witnesses as driving “like a maniac”.

Turner had been drinking all afternoon and consumed 10 pints of lager and two shots before getting behind the wheel of his car on July 4 last year.

He reached speeds of between 50 and 60mph in a 20 zone and was heard revving his engine “like a racing car driver”, Preston Crown Court heard.

His silver saloon mounted the kerb and hit Gabriel around 10pm.

The teen was walking to buy snacks from the Co-op where he also worked part time.

Gabriel, a Salford University student, was thrown into a grassed area and suffered multiple injuries. He died at the scene despite the efforts of emergency crews.

The car then crashed into a bench and collided with a tree.

Turner jailed for 10 years for death by dangerous

As well as the fatal injuries caused to Gabriel, one of Turner’s passengers suffered a number of serious injuries and two others less serious injuries, Lancashire Police said.

Turner, of Lytham, Lancashire, admitted one count of causing death by dangerous driving and one count of causing serious injury by dangerous driving.

He was jailed for 10 years for death by dangerous driving and 16 months to run concurrently for the serious injury by dangerous driving.

He was also sentenced to a five-year driving ban to take effect upon his release from prison, after which he will also have to resit an extended retest.

Mum: ‘Nothing prepares you for this devastation and emptiness’

Speaking after sentencing, Gabriel’s heartbroken mum Jacqueline Blache-Rostron said: “Gabe was a kind, gentle, smart and funny young man. Gabe was a son, brother and friend to many.

"Gabe was only 19 years old and had just completed his 1st year studying psychology at an undergraduate level.

“Nothing, and I mean nothing, can prepare you for the devastation and emptiness you feel when you are told that your child, someone that you gave birth to, are meant to protect, who you would do anything for, who you love more than anything else in this world, that they will never come home.

"You will never see him again, you will never hug him again, you will never tell him that you love him again and you will never tell him how proud you are of him. All because of the actions of that man.”

‘If I can be more like Gabriel then I know I will be better for it’

Gabriel’s step dad Adam Rostron said: “I have had the privilege of being Gabriel’s step-father and friend for 10 years. I could not have asked for a better son.

"If I can be more like Gabriel then I know I will be better for it.

“I look back and there are so many memories that we have together – holidays, bike rides, pointless chats.

"Milestones such as starting high school, learning how to properly ride a bike, getting a pet.

"I am sad and angry that Gabriel will never have the opportunity to graduate university, get married, achieve his dream job, buy his own house.

"I am sad and angry that I will not have the opportunity to help guide him if or when he became a father.

"I am sad and angry that I will not get the opportunity to ask him to pick his clothes up, turn his music down or get up out of bed in the morning.

"I am sad and angry that I will not have the opportunity, as Gabriel grew older, for us to be best friends as adults, something I had always said and knew would happen.”

Police: ‘David Turner was an accident waiting to happen’

Sgt Finn Quainton, of Lancashire Police, said: “Gabriel’s death was totally unnecessary.

"It happened because of David Turner’s complete disregard for the drink driving laws and because he drove so selfishly fast that he lost control of the car.

"Gabriel Fields had no alcohol in his system and was innocently walking on the pavement.

“David Turner was in fact an accident waiting to happen.

"Through that afternoon Turner had driven at excessive speed and bullied traffic.

"His aggressive driving meant a car crash was, in fact, inevitable. That he killed Gabriel Fields turned that into a tragedy.

“My thoughts today remain with all of Gabriel’s loved ones and I hope that today’s sentence can bring them at least some comfort.”

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