Inquest shown video of friends moments before fatal crash

Court case
Court case

An inquest into the deaths of two young men who died after the car they were in crashed into a church wall in Crowborough was shown footage of the pair in the minutes leading up to the fatal collision.

Kyle Careford, 20, and Michael Owen, 21, were pronounced dead at the scene of the crash, outside St Michael’s Church in Jarvis Brook, in April of this year.

At a joint inquest into their deaths, held at Hastings Magistrates’ Court, the family and friends of the young pair were shown a video recorded on an iPhone, which was retrieved from the wreckage of the Renault Clio after the crash.

Michael, who was a passenger in the car, had used his mobile to film Kyle driving at high speeds up and down the B2100 Rotherfield Road, through Crowborough. The car’s speedometer can be seen reading between 80 and 90mph.

It was confirmed Kyle was driving Michael’s Clio, even though he didn’t have a driving licence. On the video, Michael can be heard giving Kyle directions, telling him to keep-going, change gear or change position on the road. Just before the car goes under the railway bridge, Michael tells Kyle to “slow-down”.

Police collision investigators who examined the crash site and skid marks left on the carriageway, said the car had spun out of control, mounted the pavement and collided with the wall outside of the church, before being flipped onto its roof.

The inquest heard evidence from a toxicologist, who had tested blood samples for levels of alcohol and drugs.

Kyle had very high levels of a sleeping pill called Zopiclone, as well as Codeine, Diazepam and cannabis. He also had just below the legal limit of alcohol in his blood. Michael was also found to have had high levels of drugs in his system.

The inquest continues.

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