Man who killed his girlfriend in crash escapes jail term after her mum begs judge not to send him to prison

Her heartbroken mum said Jay Waters had already “suffered enough”

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A man who killed his girlfriend in a crash has escaped jail after her mother begged a judge not to send him to prison, saying that he had “suffered enough”.

Jay Waters, 22, was found guilty in August of causing the death of Katie Robley by careless driving following the crash on October 25 2019.

Katie, 19, was sitting in the passenger seat of Jay Water’s Ford Fiesta when he lost control of the vehicle and collided with a van.

She tragically died in hospital a day later from her injuries.

‘I believe he has suffered enough’

Katie’s heartbroken mum Rebecca Taylor begged the judge not to send Waters to prison during his sentencing hearing last week.

Ms Taylor said the couple were in a "loving relationship" and Waters would "never have deliberately" put her daughter in harm’s way.

Addressing Douglas Courthouse on the Isle of Man, she pleaded: “I urge you, please, do not send Jay to prison because we’ve all been through enough.

"I believe Jay has suffered enough.

"We still see Jay as part of our family. I still have a relationship with him, though clearly, that relationship is not the same anymore."

He lost control of his vehicle while coming round a bend

Waters was given a 12-month jail sentence, suspended for two years, and banned from driving for five years after a jury found him guilty of causing death by careless driving.

The court heard how the crash dated back to October 2019, when Waters was driving with Miss Robley along the A5, near Santon, in the south of the Isle of Man.

Witnesses had earlier seen his car overtaking three other vehicles and said it was travelling at around 40mph.

Later, he lost control of his vehicle while coming round a bend, clipping a kerb and then spinning into an oncoming van.

Prosecutors claimed that Mr Waters, who lives in Glen Vine on the Isle of Man, was “simply driving too quickly into the corner for the conditions".

Defence advocate Jim Travers acknowledged that there had been no witnesses to the crash itself, and added: "We will never know what happened on that bend."

Waters suffered a critical head injury in the crash and said he had no memory of the accident. The unnamed van driver also received hospital treatment for leg injuries.

Dad’s ‘heart had been torn in half’

Jay Waters and Katie RobleyJay Waters and Katie Robley
Jay Waters and Katie Robley

Ms Taylor told the court how the stress and anxiety of the tragedy had resulted in her having a minor heart attack in December 2019.

She said she could “take some comfort” from the fact that her daughter had been an organ donor and had gone on to help three other people, including a two-year-old child.

Katie’s father Anthony Robley told the court of his distress at waiting for the case to be resolved after it went to trial following Waters’ earlier not guilty pleas.

He said that “his heart had been torn in half” by her death and expressed his regret that he would never “be able to walk her down the aisle” or see her have children of her own.

‘You will have to live with this for the rest of your life’

Passing sentence, judge Graeme Cook found that Waters “was not [driving] in excess of the speed limit, but was driving too fast for the conditions.”

He added that his initial not guilty plea had shown a “lack of immediate remorse” and that “suspended sentences are usually imposed on those who pleaded guilty”.

But he added that "the court is not here to exact revenge", adding: "Nothing I say or do will bring Miss Robley back.

“You know that, and you will have to live with that for the rest of your life.”

Waters was also ordered to pay £4,000 prosecution costs and ordered to take an extended retest.

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