Motorist fined £1,500 for not reporting crash

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The Magistrate’s Court heard that Kenneth Martin Richmond Jenkins was behind the wheel of the white Land Rover at 6.15 pm on 12 May on Grande Route des Sablons in Grouville when it hit the wall of a property near La Rocque Harbour.

Centenier Nick Andrews said that a witness reported that the vehicle seemed to be momentarily out of control before it crashed.

The witness took a photo of the rear of the vehicle and gave it to the owner of the property.

Jenkins stopped the Land Rover a little way down the road after the collision to inspect the damage to the car’s passenger door and wheels. But after doing so, he drove off.

Centenier Andrews said that there ‘was significant structural damage to the wall’ but that was denied by defence lawyer Advocate Paul Nicholls, who said it only amounted to ‘a couple of hundred pounds’.

Jenkins (40), of Rue de la Forge, Grouville, admitted failing to stop and report an accident and careless driving. The court was told that after the incident the police could not find Jenkins or the vehicle, despite making extensive overnight inquiries.

However, Advocate Nicholls said that his client had not been drinking and that there was no suggestion of alcohol being consumed. Advocate Nicholls said that Jenkins, who he said had driven on the Island’s roads since he was 17, did not realise he had to report the accident to the police. ‘There is a public perception that a collision that does not involve another vehicle does not have to be reported to the police,’ said Advocate Nicholls.

But Relief Magistrate David Le Cornu said the defendant must have known his obligations, as he had previously been cautioned at parish hall level for failing to stop and report an accident.

The court heard that the crash happened when the defendant was looking at a screen in his new car. In addition, the lawyer said that his client was also finding it difficult to adjust to the width of the vehicle on the Island’s roads.

‘He was driving a particularly powerful new car,’ said Advocate Nicholls, who added that his client was angry with himself and was mortified about the damage to his new car.

‘He did not report the accident as he did not know what to say,’ said Advocate Nicholls.

The court was told that the next day Jenkins voluntarily went to the owner of the wall and agreed to pay for the damage.

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