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Drunk jailed for 10 years for killing two

PUBLISHED: 14:44 03 February 2010 | UPDATED: 11:26 23 August 2010

RECKLESS: Stefan Stanko

RECKLESS: Stefan Stanko

THE driver who ploughed into a group of six pedestrians killing two and leaving a 12-year-old crippled for life has been jailed for 10 years. Appearing at Maidstone Crown Court on Friday, Stefan Stanko of West Street, Gravesend, stood head bowed as the p

THE driver who ploughed into a group of six pedestrians killing two and leaving a 12-year-old crippled for life has been jailed for 10 years.

Appearing at Maidstone Crown Court on Friday, Stefan Stanko of West Street, Gravesend, stood head bowed as the prosecution delivered a damning account of how he drove whilst intoxicated, despite friends' warnings.

The court heard how, rounding a bend in Beaver Street, Ashford, just after midnight on September 27 last year, the 24-year-old lost control of his Silver Nissan Primera.

He crashed into a wall before hitting a crowd of pedestrians who had just left Ashford International Sports and Social Club. He then drove off.

Denise Head, 47, died at the scene, Brian Moon, 67, died hours later in William Harvey Hospital and Rosina Brown, 12, received such severe head injuries she slipped into a coma.

Still wheelchair-bound and fed from a tube, she is likely to need 24-hour care for the rest of her life.

Teresa Williams, daughter of victim Brian Moon, spoke on behalf of the families affected by the crash.

She said: "No sentence is going to bring back the family we have lost.

"Our lives have been turned upside down by the actions of Stefan Stanko."

Judge Jeremy Gold said the maximum sentence for causing death by dangerous driving is 14 years and he started with a sentence of 12 and a half, reduced to ten by his plea of guilty.

He said: "You caused carnage. There is nothing I can say and no sentence I can possibly impose that can provide satisfactory comfort to the many people whose lives have been so drastically affected by your actions."

Stanko was staying with his brother-in-law Martin Petro in Ashford when the pair went to a barbecue in Christchurch Road, in the east of the town earlier that night.

An account from Mr Petro stated he saw Stanko drink around a third of a standard size bottle of whiskey.

Stanko revealed in a police interview he had consumed additional alcohol, and a breathalyser test found him twice over the drink drive limit.

Fluid from a wrecked car anonymously reported left in Christchurch Way was traced to Beaver Street, whilst hair taken from Stanko held shards of glass from the Nissan's windscreen.

Stanko pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to causing death by dangerous driving, dangerous driving, excess breath alcohol and failing to stop and report an accident.

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