Drink and drug driving woman jailed for five years after killing cyclist

The woman failed to stop at the scene of the incident, claiming she thought she had hit a fox

Police Leicestershire PCSO
(Image credit: Getty Images)

A 42-year-old mother of two has been jailed for five years and two months after she killed a cyclist in a hit and run collision last year. 

On October 11, Emma Moughan drove 10 miles from her home in North Yorkshire to her mother's house while heavily under the influence of alcohol and cocaine, York Crown Court heard. 

During that time she hit Patrick Hird on a long straight of the A1041, who was cycling on his e-bike to a night shift in the factory at which he worked. The 61-year-old died at the scene with head and spinal injuries. 

The court heard that Mr Hird had both the front and rear lights illuminated on his bike, and he was also wearing high-visibility clothing. Given the stretch of road he was cycling on at the time of the incident, it was claimed that he would have been visible to Moughan for 600 metres, giving her around 20 seconds to react to his presence on the road.

Moughan didn't stop at the scene either, continuing to her destination before police officers pulled her over in Selby town centre when they noticed her smashed windscreen, missing front bumper, and two of her wheels had lost their tyres. 

She told officers she believed she had collided with a fox, and gave a blood alcohol reading that was three times over the limit, plus a reading for cocaine that was ten times over the drug threshold limit.

When police returned to the scene where Moughan had struck Mr Hird, they found a group of friends attempting to give the man first aid. The car's missing bumper and evidence that the car's wheels had straddled the grass verge was also there, while Mr Hird's DNA was later found on the vehicle's roof.

Moughan pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving, and received a five-year and two months prison sentence. She was also disqualified from driving for eight years.

Judge Simon Hickley said: "No sentence can do justice in the family's eyes. Patrick Hird was doing everything possible to make sure he could be seen. He was going about his business and I have no hesitation in finding he would have been easily visible for around 600 metres.

"Your car had reactive lights. On that straight road you can see for quite a distance. You were driving what was effectively a weapon and you were a danger to all road users. You could have hit anybody. You drove for seven miles and after you hit him you didn't stop. He had no chance. You claimed you had hit a fox but I doubt that you believed that.

"You carried on driving badly. Patrick had been thrown onto the car roof. The impact had bent the steering rod of your car and snapped the suspension arm."

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Staff Writer

Ryan is a staff writer for Cycling Weekly, having joined the team in September 2021. He first joined Future in December 2020, working across FourFourTwo, Golf Monthly, Rugby World and Advnture's websites, before making his way to cycling. After graduating from Cardiff University with a degree in Journalism and Communications, Ryan earned a NCTJ qualification to further develop as a writer.