- John Brazil, 28, hit Anne Jones, 60, in Manchester going 60mph on a 30mph road
- He has been sentenced to nine years and nine months in prison
A banned driver, who killed a mother-of-two in a ‘cowardly’ hit-and-run wept as he was jailed for almost ten years at Minshull Street Crown Court in Manchester.
Rochdale born John Brazil, 28, was ‘showing off’ in a Mercedes A180 when he mowed down Anne Jones going up to 60mph in a 30mph zone just six days before Christmas in 2021.
60-year-old Mrs Jones, a former Rochdale council PA was killed almost instantly when crossing Edenfield Road with her husband of 33 years on their way out to dinner with friends.
While Brazil fled the scene before handing himself into police the next day.
Her crushed family later said: ‘The day Anne died, our lives lost their sparkle.’
It was quickly discovered that Brazil had been banned from driving for three years in 2016 after he led police on a 82mph car chase before losing control of his Ford Fiesta and crashing with three passengers inside.
He had been ordered to pass an extended driving re-test before getting behind the wheel of a vehicle again – but he never took one.
Mrs Jones was so beloved in her community that more than 400 people attended her funeral.
In a powerful courtroom statement which addressed Brazil direct, Mrs Jones’ widowed husband said: ‘Anne was the glue in so many people’s lives and she meant the world to them.
‘We had been planning our retirement together and the night before she has passed she told a friend she never been so happy.
‘She knew her beloved children were happy and she longed to be a grandmother.
‘But you took her from us in a second and the resulting emptiness you have caused us is incalculable.
‘We will suffer for many years emotionally and physically because of what you did.
‘You care nothing for anyone except yourself. You care nothing for the people you have hurt and you are a coward who ran away when you had no idea whether you had killed or seriously injured another person.’
He continued: ‘You cared nothing about what you did except saving your own skin and you drove away without a second’s thought.
‘You had driven dangerously before but did a prosecution stop you from doing it again? No it did not.
‘You did not even bother trying to pass your driving test. Instead you just got into a car again with no care for other people and drove at excessive speeds not caring whether you would kill or injured anyone.
‘You do not care you killed a person loved by so many. Society needs protecting from you.’
Brazil sobbed in the dock as he was jailed for nine years and nine months after he admitted causing death by dangerous driving, driving whilst disqualified and having no insurance.
He was also banned from driving for five years which will start when he is released.
In a letter of apology to the family, Brazil who has a three year old son said: ‘I understand my actions are unforgiveable and I am deeply sorry for the pain and devastation I have caused you all.
‘I will never be able to find the right words to convey how deeply remorseful I am. I wish I had just thought before getting behind the wheel of that car.
‘I should not have been driving, it was reckless and stupid of me and I will forever be ashamed of myself.
‘Nothing I can say or do can bring back Mrs Jones but from the bottom of my heart I am truly and deeply sorry.’
Sentencing Judge Bernadette Baxter told Brazil: ‘You were travelling at excessive speed for a prolonged period and at the time were disqualified from driving.
‘Bluntly you should not have been on the road at all.
‘Had you need driving within the speed limit, Mrs Jones would not have lost her life.
‘This tragedy was wholly avoidable but you chose to deliberately disregard the rules of the road.
‘The effects of what you did will forever last with Mrs Jones’ family – and long after any sentence I pass on you expires.’