Fatal accident in Pau: “I had no idea that I had hit a pedestrian”

Fatal accident in Pau: “I had no idea that I had hit a pedestrian”
Fatal accident in Pau: “I had no idea that I had hit a pedestrian”

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The man speaks in a quavering voice at the bar of the court, this Thursday. He is 76 years old. On October 7, 2021, around 5.45 p.m., he hit a pedestrian, roughly the same age as him, who had entered the roadway of the boulevard du rector Jean-Sarrailh, in Pau. Seriously injured, the victim died a few days later as a result of his head trauma.

The driver is on trial for manslaughter. It was a route he took regularly. The traffic light on rue du Sergent Bernes Cambot has just turned green. The motorist turns left towards the boulevard. At the end of the day at the beginning of October, he was dazzled by the low sun. He does not see the man who has started to cross on the pedestrian crossing.

“I thought it was a rock”

“I did not see this gentleman who was crossing, confirms the defendant. I heard a loud bang on my windshield. Little did I know that I had hit a pedestrian. I thought it was a rock. When he gets out of his vehicle, he “realizes the gravity of the situation”. “That’s why I was very shocked,” he says. The firefighters insisted that I go to the hospital. »

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However, he defines himself as “a careful driver”. No bodily injury since the age of 18. “I have a 58% bonus,” he says. But he also has visual impairment in his left eye, since he was 14 years old. That didn’t stop him from driving. He is “regularly checked” by his ophthalmologist.

And for him, this deficiency has no connection with the accident. He was just dazzled. “You know, it’s the story of a few seconds, regrets the septuagenarian. I don’t know if I closed my eyes but there was the surprise of the glare. »

“He can no longer drive”

Since the accident and his placement under judicial supervision, he is prohibited from driving any motor vehicle. And he was declared “unfit” to drive, because of his age and his visual impairment. But when the administration allowed him to drive a vehicle without a license, he jumped at the chance. “I immediately bought myself a small cart to be able to get around. “Except that justice, she had maintained her ban.

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He finds it difficult to understand this prohibition and the judicial review went wrong. “I will not arrive crying to do well, retorts the defendant. They told me again that I had killed someone. As if I were an assassin. »

“Your misconduct resulted in a death, supports the deputy prosecutor Jeanne François. The fault is to have been reckless near a pedestrian crossing that you knew. It happened to all of us to be dazzled on the road. But you should have stopped at this pedestrian crossing, to avoid the risk. “She requires 4 months suspended prison sentence, a cancellation of the license with a ban on returning it for 10 years. “You can’t drive anymore,” she insists. A ban on driving any vehicle is also required for one year.

“Without my little car, I can’t do anything anymore,” replies the septuagenarian. I have no one to help me, I am all alone. “His lawyer, Me Bruno Moutier, does not plead for release, but believes that” this imprudence is not very clearly characterized “. The driver should have, in the space of a few seconds, “lower his sun visor, pound”? Either, but he asks “a very great indulgence” to the court, which will nevertheless follow the requisitions.

The article is in French

Tags: Fatal accident Pau idea hit pedestrian

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