Mail. (usual caveats)
A woman police officer responsible for issuing fines to drivers for talking on their phone was using her own mobile when she was involved in a fatal crash, an inquest heard yesterday.Now most cases actually involve texting when causing an accident when using the mobile phone. However, it does make you wonder why she tried to lie about using it at first rather than go straight to the using it on speakerphone excuse. A more cynical person might just suspect that even the speakerphone excuse was just that, an excuse and the phone wasn't on speaker at all, though naturally proving such would be difficult.
Collette Carpenter had the device on loud speaker and rested on her lap to have a conversation with her partner when she pulled out into the path of motorcyclist David Bartholomew.
The 54-year-old father-of-two collided with the side of Miss Carpenter's Peugeot 206, was catapulted into the road at Ferndown, Dorset, and died of horrific injuries hours later on March 20 last year.
When she was interviewed by fellow police officers, Miss Carpenter, 23, lied and claimed she hadn't been using her mobile phone at the time.
The special constable later said she had briefly taken an incoming call before changing her story again and admitted that she had been on the phone for her entire journey with the mobile on loud speaker on her lap.
She claimed that talking on loud speaker with a phone on her lap was 'the same as having a passenger in the car'.
A police accident investigator told the inquest that by using her phone, the off-duty officer had 'very likely' contributed to the crash.
The very fact that her story changed and she was caught in a web of lies you suspect should have been taken into account. Though it apparently wasn't and she walked free after killing a motorcyclist after pulling out at a junction.
One motorist who has been penalised in the past wrote on a local internet forum in response to the inquest: 'So much for Dorset Police's 'No Excuses campaign.As far as I can tell (I may be wrong) she didn't even get points on her license. I suspect that most of the people involved in the enforcement of the 'No Excuse' campaign do the very things that they prosecute drivers for, whether it be Police Officers, magistrates, speed camera operatives, Driver Awareness Course instructors, council officials and Councillors.
'I received three points for having my phone on my lap whilst on loud speaker so it must be an offence.'
I may be wrong...