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Coach driver convicted of causing death of cyclist by careless driving

PUBLISHED: 12:16 22 August 2018 | UPDATED: 12:30 22 August 2018

Karla Roman, 32, died in hospital (Picture: MPS)

Karla Roman, 32, died in hospital (Picture: MPS)

MPS

A coach driver who killed a cyclist when he turned into her path has been convicted of causing death by careless driving.

Barry Northcott, 40, caused fatal and “catastrophic injuries” to Karla Roman when he turned left into the 32-year-old in Whitechapel after failing to spot her in his mirrors.

Northcott, of Southover, Bromley, denied one count of causing death by careless driving, but a jury at Woolwich Crown Court convicted him and he faces sentencing next month.

Ms Roman, who worked for an architecture firm in Shoreditch, was cycling to work along Whitechapel High Street, close to the junction with White Church Lane, when she was killed.

Prosecutor Harpreet Sandhu told the trial that Ms Roman had been ahead of Northcott and within view for some 16 seconds before the crash on February 6 last year.

Northcott made the “deliberate decision” to pull into the cycle stop box at traffic lights while there was “no reason” he should not have seen Ms Roman, Mr Sandhu said.

Jurors heard that Northcott told police he regularly disregarded the rules about the cycle stop box to “stop himself being swamped by cyclists”.

Mr Sandhu said: “The defendant began a left-hand turn and into the path that Karla Roman was on. He did not see her in the mirrors as he turned because he was not paying attention.

“He did not see her in the mirrors as he continued to turn as he was not paying attention, and, when he made that left-hand turn into her path, his coach collided with her and ended up dragging her with her bike under the wheels of the coach.”

She was taken to hospital, where she died of her injuries.

Northcott only became aware that he had hit Ms Roman when one of his passengers informed him, Mr Sandhu told jurors.

Northcott was bailed to appear for sentencing at the same court on September 21.

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