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Call for law change after death of Gloucester welder

By The Citizen  |  Posted: January 30, 2013

TRAgEDY: Paul Stock. Right; driver Graham Godwin.

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WIDOW Mandy Stock's fight to change the law will be raised in Parliament today.

Her husband Paul Stock, a well-known welder, was killed in a collision with "an absolute menace on the roads" who was disqualified from driving.

Gloucester MP Richard Graham is set to highlight the case in Prime Minister's Questions as the man responsible, Graham Godwin, was sent down for 18 months.

Mrs Stock has started two e-petitions to change the law, because the maximum sentence he could been handed for causing death while driving when disqualified was two years.

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The fact Godwin, of Winnycroft Lane, Matson, was banned when he committed the offence in March, did not mean he could be sentenced more severely than a driver who was not.

"My question will focus simply on the facts of the case and the limitations of the sentencing guidelines," said Mr Graham. "This is not the only such case – Mandy is calling for a review of the sentencing guidelines for people already banned from driving. I support her cause, and will ask the Prime Minister to ask the Attorney-General's office to look into this as soon as possible."

Last week Gloucester Crown Court heard Godwin had 12 previous convictions for driving without insurance, nine for driving while disqualified and three for drink driving.

"There has got to be a change in the law," said Mrs Stock wants a review of sentencing of disqualified drivers whose driving causes a death, or an injury.

The petitions can be found at ect.gov.uk/petitions and searching for "death while" and "serious injury".

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  • sticks_stones  |  January 30 2013, 11:16PM

    Get your act into gear Mr Graham and help YOUR constituents. RIP Paul Stock

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  • Matt1006  |  January 30 2013, 5:37PM

    Yep, something needs to be done. It will only be 9 months actually in prison, which is an insult to the memory of the innocent victim of his actions. The culprit has willingly committed a criminal act in riding his motorbike on the road whilst banned, and has killed a man in the process. He's taken a life. 9 months inside - disgusting. The punishment for repeat driving ban offenders also needs to be reviewed - needs to be an automatic prison sentence (and further ban) if caught behind the wheel / on a motorbike whilst banned. This moron has proved he won't abide by his previous ban (and committed other offences to try to cover his tracks), so what chance him sticking to his latest ban when he's released? The requirement on the judge to reduce the sentence when a guilty plea is entered also needs to be reviewed. No doubt this moron was advised to plead guilty exactly because it would result in a reduced sentence. Yet he willingly went out on the road whilst banned, so knew he would be in trouble. Guilty - of course, never in question. But a willing criminal act, so I don't think he should receive a lighter sentence just because he's confessed.

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  • FreeRadical1  |  January 30 2013, 4:52PM

    Well, about time! This issue is typical of the type of topic that Richard Graham should stick to, rather than some of his recent proclamations. It is a genuine problem that has been experienced by one of his own constituents, and the law is in need of reform in order to allow justice to be done. And yet the story hasn't exactly had a flood of comments...

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