Driver jailed for reversing car into man

Businessman Simon Waters

Businessman Simon Waters

First published in News Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Photograph of the Author by , Crime Reporter

An angry businessman, who used a car as a weapon to deliberately reverse into a man in a pub car park, has been jailed.

David Emsley was crushed between the vehicle and railings, fracturing his ribs and suffering other injuries, when Simon Waters reversed the car, which he had taken without consent.

Bradford Crown Court heard yesterday that Waters, a car valeter, had used the Ford Galaxy, which the owners had paid to be parked at Leeds-Bradford Airport and valeted while they were on holiday, to move furniture for a relative, and then drove to The Fox pub at Menston with his partner and children for a drink.

Jailing him for 21 months, Judge Jonathan Rose said: “It is entirely fortuitous Mr Emsley did not suffer serious injury.”

Waters, 40, of Cross Green, Otley, was convicted last month of unlawful wounding, but cleared by a jury of wounding with intent. He admitted a charge of aggravated taking a vehicle without consent.

Prosecutor Ken Green said Waters was entrusted with the keys of two vehicles to be valeted, but on August 11 last year he had taken the Ford Galaxy for his own use, and driven to the pub where the offence took place.

There was a disagreement in the pub between Waters and Mr Emsley, which continued in the car park when they left.

Waters, who had previous convictions for dishonesty and one for causing actual bodily harm, dating back to 1998, effectively blocked in Mr Emsley’s vehicle and then reversed – catching the complainant’s hand, causing bruising and soreness.

He drove off but returned up to half an hour later and deliberately reversed into Mr Emsley, pinning him to the railings.

Judge Rose said one of the aggravating features was that Waters’ seven-year-old daughter and 21-year-old stepdaughter were in the back of the Galaxy at the time of the offence and were distressed.

The judge said: “Your reversing was deliberate, but you didn’t intend to cause really serious harm.”

He added: “You have been untruthful to the author of the pre-sentence report. It points to someone unwilling to take responsibility and unwilling to demonstrate remorse.

“I recognise it will have consequences on the business you have established, but particularly on that little girl. The only person responsible for that is you.”

Waters was disqualified from driving for two years and ordered to take an extended driving test.

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