Driver who killed Jefferies given community order

The 18-year-old man who admitted to causing the death of cycling stalwart Rob Jefferies by careless driving was handed a 12-month community order by Weymouth Magistrates Court on Thursday.

Lee Cahill was driving along the A351 near Wareham, Dorset, on 26 May 2011 when he struck Jefferies from behind. Jefferies was on a training ride with a friend.

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As well as the 12-month community order, Cahill was handed an 18-month driving ban, must re-take his driving test and ordered to pay £85 costs, according to the Bournemouth Daily Echo. Cahill passed his driving test in January 2011, and it has been previously reported that he was convicted of speeding in April 2011, one month before the incident.

Evidence presented in court from the driver in front of Cahill at the time of the incident said that the college student had simply failed to move his Renault Clio around the cyclists, driving straight into them. Cahill claimed in his defence that he had been dazzled by the sun.

Cahill was described by his defence as being ‘devastated’ by the incident and that he is ‘extremely remorseful’.

Jefferies’ widow had prepared a statement on behalf of her family that was read out during the sentencing. “I cannot make up for their loss,” said Mrs Jefferies. “We were looking forward to a change in our life together. Rob was doing a teaching course and we were looking forward to financial and domestic stability which would enable us to be closer. Now I have lost that.”

Jefferies was a well known figure on the British cycling scene. He served as British Cycling’s volunteer co-ordinator as well as riding at a high level in track and time trial events. He was a member of Poole Wheelers CC. 

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