The parents of a cyclist who was killed by a driver who hit him from behind with his Jeep have asked a question that has been on their minds since the tragic incident occurred.
They asked, “Why didn’t you see him?” The victim, David Jones, was thrown into the air after being hit and suffered a serious head injury which led to his death.
The incident occurred on May 27, 2020, on the A48 Crack Hill in Bridgend at around 5.50am.
Raymond Treharne, 73, was driving his Grand Cherokee when it collided with David Jones’ bike.
After the collision, Treharne was “in shock” and told people: “I hit him…. He was standing on the bike. He fell into the road.”
At the trial at Cardiff Crown Court, it was revealed that there was no evidence that Treharne had applied his brakes or swerved prior to the collision.
Forensic collision investigators concluded that Mr Jones was in an upright position and fixed to his bike at the moment of the crash rather than falling from a static position.
Treharne, of Abbey Road, Kenfig Hill, Bridgend, was found guilty by a jury of causing death by careless driving.
During the sentencing hearing at Swansea Crown Court, Mr Jones’ father Tony Jones read out a victim personal statement.
He stated that he and his family felt “an array of emotions” including “disbelief, numbness, anger, and guilt”.
He added that they were not seeking vengeance or a pound of flesh, but they were looking for justice and an answer to an easy question, “Where were you looking? How could you not see my son riding a bike? He was doing what he loved…. He wasn’t doing anything wrong.
Why didn’t you see him? Only you and your conscience can answer that question.”
Mr Jones Sr also stated that Treharne’s decision to plead not guilty had prolonged the family’s pain.
He said that their world had been “turned upside-down,” and no sentence passed by the court would bring their son back.
The victim’s former partner and mother of his children, Michelle Crocker, stated that Mr Jones’ two children had been affected by his death.
She said that telling them their father had died was the hardest thing she had ever had to do.
In mitigation, Treharne’s defense barrister, Helen Randall, described Mr Jones’ death as “a desperately sad incident with tragic consequences.”
She said that the incident has had a “profound effect” on Treharne, who was a professional driver of more than 50 years.
She said that the defendant has now stopped driving, which has brought about an early retirement, with Ms. Randall describing the ageing process as “significant.”
The judge, Catherine Richards, stated during the sentencing that Mr Jones was not to blame for any part of his death.
She said that the deceased’s family would have to live with the consequences of Treharne’s actions for the rest of their lives.
She added that “Periods of inattention can have catastrophic effects, and that is what happened here… You failed to have regard to a vulnerable road user, namely a cyclist, on this road.”
Treharne was sentenced to 36 weeks imprisonment suspended for 12 months. He was made subject to a curfew between 5pm and 6am for six months. He was also disqualified from driving for seven years.