A man has pleaded guilty for killing the mother of Olympic cyclist Chris Boardman, through careless driving. Boardman won gold in 1992 Barcelona Olympics.
Liam Rosney, 33, pleaded guilty prior to his trial on Monday at the Mold Crown court. He admitted killing Carol Boardman by careless driving. However, he denied the serious charge of causing her death by dangerous driving.
On July 16, 2016, Carol Boardman, mother of Chris Boardman who won gold in 1992 Barcelona Olympics, fell from her bicycle on a mini-roundabout in Connah’s Quay, North Wales and was hit by Rosney’s Mitsubishi pickup truck.
The 75-year old was taken to the hospital after suffering multiple injuries. She later died in the hospital.
Matthew Curtis, prosecuting, said the court has vigilantly considered the case and the situation. “In those circumstances we do not invite a trial in relation to count one,” Curtis said.
A jury that was sworn in for the trial and was expected to last three or four days, but was discharged after the guilty plea of Rosney. The prosecution alleged that Rosney, of Connah’s Quay, was talking over the phone with his wife, seconds before the crash took place.
Curtis claimed that Rosney attended three phone calls minutes before the crash happened. The car did not have a hands-free facility.
Curtis said: “The phone was being used on speaker mode, not requiring the defendant to handle the phone as he was talking, but plainly to accept or reject or end calls. The call ended prior to entry on to the roundabout, we know that from billing data.”
“What we will say the case is, then, is that the defendant continued to be distracted by a) the telephone calls which he had been taking, and b) his mobile telephone, which was on the passenger seat inside his vehicle. We know he did not see Mrs Boardman and first realised he may have collided with her when his vehicle was physically riding over Mrs Boardman’s body.”
Curtis said that a witness, Kayleigh Anders, saw Rosney looking down towards his lap and talking, it gave an impression that he was still on the phone.
In July, Rosney had faced trial, but the jury was discharged. He and his wife were charged for subverting the course of justice for allegedly deleting the call logs from their phone. However, the charges were later dropped.
Judge Rhys Rowlands said the guilty plea would attract some credit when Rosney was being sentenced but “nowhere near as much” as it would have if it had been made when he was on trial in July.
Chris Boardman took to Twitter to pay tributes to his mother, shortly after her death.
“Our mum was the most positive, outgoing person you could ever hope to meet and her generosity of spirit inspired everyone she met,” he said.
“Many of our childhood memories involve my mother and the outdoors, walking out over Hoylake sandbank, swimming in the deep gullies or hunting for fossils on Llandegla Moor in North Wales.
“Wanting to share her passion for cycling, even well into her 70s, she often took groups of young novices out on their first forays into North Wales. We love you Carol, may the wind be ever at your back.”