[ad_1]

The wife of a US diplomat who fatally mowed down a British teen before leaving England got a wrist-slap sentence Thursday that’ll let her dodge prison time.

Anne Sacoolas, 45, received an eight-month suspended sentence and was banned from driving for a year after pleading guilty to causing the death of 19-year-old Harry Dunn in 2019 by driving on the wrong side of the road. She had faced a five-year prison sentence.

Justice Bobbie Cheema-Grubb allowed Sacoolas to participate in London’s Central Criminal Court by video link from the US.

This court artist sketch by Elizabeth Cook shows Mrs Justice Cheema-Grubb, watched by Harry Dunn's family, as she passes sentence on Anne Sacoolas, right, at the Old Bailey, London, Thursday, Dec. 8, 2022. An American woman who left the U.K. after killing a teenager in a road accident more than three years ago has been given an eight-month suspended prison sentence, though she declined to come to Britain for the court hearing.
Anne Sacoolas appeared virtually in the London courtroom after her lawyer said the US advised her not to travel overseas.
AP
Harry Dunn's mother, Charlotte Charles gives a statement alongside her husband Bruce and Harry Dunn's father, Tim Dunn and his partner Tracey and Radd Seiger, adviser and spokesperson for Family of Harry Dunn, following the sentencing of Anne Sacoolas, the wife of a U.S. diplomat, over the death of Harry Dunn, outside the Old Bailey, in London, Britain, December 8, 2022.
Dunn’s parents, who had long lobbied US and UK officials for justice, had mixed emotions after the verdict was handed down.
REUTERS

Cheema-Grubb said that the woman’s actions were “not far short of deliberately dangerous driving,” but allowed her to dodge jail time — so long as she doesn’t get in trouble again over the next year — because of her plea and record of good behavior.

But the judge acknowledged the sentence couldn’t be enforced if Sacoolas remained in the US.

The deadly accident occurred outside RAF Croughton, an air base in eastern England used by American forces. Sacoolas admitted to driving her Volvo on the wrong side of the road and colliding into Dunn, who was on his motorbike.

Sacoolas and her husband, an American intelligence officer, returned to the US in the days after the incident as American officials invoked invoked diplomatic immunity on her behalf, outraging Britons and the Dunn family, who lobbied in vain for years in Washington, DC and London to force officials to extradite Sacoolas to the UK to face justice.

Charlotte Charles, Dunn’s mother, said in a victim impact statement that his death “haunts me every minute of every day and I’m not sure how I’m ever going to get over it.”

Outside of Old Bailey, Charles shared her disgust over Sacoolas’ alleged preferential treatment, while also celebrating the fact that there was even a trial and sentence.

“She should have been there, you know? We would have been. I think it’s despicable that she didn’t come over on the judge’s orders,” Charles said, in an interview posted by Sky News.

Pictured: Harry Dunn
Harry Dunn was killed in 2019 when Anne Sacoolas hit his motorbike as she drove on the wrong side of the road near a military base in England.
Justice for Harry Dunn
Anne Sacoolas spotted pumping gas in Northern Virginia
Sacoolas, spotted pumping gas in Virginia in 2020, hightailed it to the US and did not return to England on the advice of diplomatic officials.
MEGA

“Anne Sacoolas has a criminal record for the rest of her life. Um, that was something that, you know, they never, she never thought she’d see, the US government never thought that they’d see.

“And, we’ve worked tirelessly and relentlessly to make sure that, in the end, she still would have to do what you and I would have had to done, so yup, Harry, we’ve done it!,” she exclaimed emotionally while looking up towards the sky.

Dunn family spokesman Radd Seiger said the US had “interfered” in the British justice system, and said he was pursing a Parliamentary inquest to make sure officials never let an American be slapped on the wrist for killing a Brit again.

“We now know that Harry was not the first person to die outside a United States Air Force base. There have been thousands of people killed or seriously injured over the decades at the hands of American drivers, and it must stop,” Seiger reportedly said outside the courthouse.

Flowers were left in remembrance of Harry Dunn in Oct. of 2019 on the B4031 near RAF Croughton near Brackley, England.
Flowers were left in remembrance of Harry Dunn in Oct. of 2019 on the B4031 near RAF Croughton near Brackley, England.
Getty Images

“Our real enemy isn’t Anne Sacoolas our real enemy here is the US government,” Seiger said.

Sacoolas, who was advised by US officials not to come to the UK for the trial or sentencing, did not ask for diplomatic immunity, and was “deeply sorry for the pain” she caused, her lawyer Ben Cooper told the court.

“There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think about Harry,” Sacoolas’ statement continued.

With Post wires



[ad_2]

Source link

Author

Comments are closed.