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Man jailed for 14 years following serious collision in Hereford

A man has been sentenced to 14 years in prison after being found guilty of Section 18 grievous bodily harm (GBH) with intent following a five day trial at Worcester Crown Court on Friday (1 March).

Joseph Purcell

Joseph Purcell, 53, of Letterston Road in Rumney, Cardiff, had earlier pleaded guilty to dangerous driving causing serious injury but had denied the second charge of Section 18 GBH which led to this charge going to trial. 

The incident happened at around 6.50pm on Monday, 17 September 2018 when Purcell, who was driving along the M50 southbound near to junction 3 Newent in Hereford, intentionally collided with another vehicle occupied by two people.  

The first victim, a 19-year-old woman who was a passenger in this vehicle, was left with life-changing injuries as a result of the collision. The second victim and the driver of this vehicle, a 37-year-old woman, was left uninjured but shaken.

Following the incident, Purcell fled the scene and an investigation was undertaken to identify and locate him. He was subsequently arrested three days later on 20 September.

Sergeant Jamie Bullock from West Mercia Police said: "The acts undertaken by Purcell have had a huge impact on two innocent law abiding citizens. 

"Purcell used his vehicle as a weapon to threaten the lives of the victims and then denied the offence of GBH, showing no signs of remorse, despite inflicting serious life-changing injuries to one of his victims.

"I  would like to commend the members of public who supported this prosecution, along with the tenacity of the work undertaken by one of our officers, Detective Constable Peter Dunne, who worked tirelessly to ensure that Purcell be brought to justice.

"We welcome the court's decision to sentence Purcell to 14 years in prison as this demonstrates the severity of both the case and Purcell's actions, and I hope that the victims feel some sense of closure after their ordeal.

"We will not tolerate dangerous driving on our roads and will do everything we can to bring offenders to justice."

Posted: 3.15pm, Monday, 4 March, LK, Corporate Communications

Published 04/03/19