Company boss racing with his colleague knocked down and killed young boy, 8

Company boss racing with his colleague knocked down and killed young boy, 8

A company boss who raced his colleague around the streets faces prison time after an eight-year-old child who was playing tag with a friend was slain.

While playing with another child on a residential street in Ashton-under-Lyne, Safiullah Asif was struck by a BMW. The BMW was being driven by Kevin Jones, age 36.

Thomas McGrath, his 24-year-old coworker, had been in front of Jones in his VW Polo shortly before to the tragic crash and had missed Safiullah “by chance,” according to testimony during the Bolton Crown Court trial.

‘The way in which [McGrath] drove influenced the car behind to drive in a similar way,’ prosecutor Neil Fryman told the court. ‘Mr Jones in the car behind is chasing the defendant.’

After the accident on July 23, 2020, Safiullah was sent “flying through the air” and sustained catastrophic injuries. Later, he passed away in the Manchester Children’s Hospital. Jones, of Ashton New Road, Beswick, pleaded guilty to causing death by reckless driving in the past.

McGrath has been found guilty of the same offence after a trial.

The court heard that McGrath, who worked for Debt Clear, a financial and insolvency services company, at the time of the crash, concluded his shift at 8 p.m. The jury was shown film showing him and Jones lined up in their vehicles on the side of Charges Street, close to their place of employment.

Prosecutor Neil Fryman referred to it as the beginning of a “race” since surveillance footage showed them travelling at an estimated 45 mph in a 20 mph zone on Ryecroft Street. Just before to 8:15 p.m., McGrath’s Volkswagen Polo sped by two youngsters playing in the street.

The court was informed that about one second later, Safiullah stepped out in front of Jones’ BMW. Safiullah was struck and suffered many brain bleeds and fractures before passing away the next evening.

McGrath, who now operates his own firm providing private medical insurance and mortgage protection services, was not engaged in the crash and fled the scene. He reported hearing a “loud bang” and turning around to see Jones crashing into a parked vehicle and a small child on the ground.

McGrath, though, said that it was “not his business” and that he had nothing to do with the crash. In his testimony, he denied having any “agreement” or “encouragement” with Jones to race.

After Safiullah passed away, many people paid touching tributes to him.

Rachael Finnigan, whose son Riley was Safiullah’s closest friend, organised a memorial balloon release in his honour. ‘Safiullah would always come out of school with a smile on his face,’ she told the M.E.N. at the time.

‘My son always told me the things that he had done to make him laugh and smile. He was such a bright, happy little boy and he was very popular in school.’

Neighbours said Safiullah’s death had left the community in shock. One said: ‘He was a very nice boy. Calm but cute and sweet.’

»Company boss racing with his colleague knocked down and killed young boy, 8«

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