"You did not stop. You did not offer to help."
Fatheha Begun Abedin, aged 29, of Leicester, was jailed for 18 months after she crashed into and seriously injured an elderly man on a zebra crossing. The hit-and-run driver later learned it was her father-in-law.
She had left the family home in Evington Street at around 6:15 pm on February 5, 2018, to collect a takeaway.
At the same time, her father-in-law left the home to visit a nearby relative.
On her way home, Abedin became distracted by her mobile phone and went across the zebra crossing in St Peter’s Road, Highfield, crashing into her father-in-law.
The elderly man suffered several serious injuries, including a fractured pelvis.
However, Abedin carried on driving. The incident was captured on CCTV and it led to a high-profile police appeal.
Abedin began making up a series of lies in the hope of covering up what she had done. As police gathered more evidence, her lies evolved.
Initially, she claimed she was not aware of the crash.
Next, she said she might have been involved but had no memory of the incident. Abedin claimed she had suffered a partial loss of consciousness caused by an asthma attack.
The incident threw her father-in-law onto her car bonnet and into her windscreen. The force of the impact shattered the windscreen and bent the wipers.
Joey Kwong, prosecuting, said that the hit-and-run driver claimed that thieves breaking into the car had caused the damage.
She also attempted to conceal her use of the phone at the time of the collision by saying it often delayed sending messages, something an expert refuted.
Leicestershire Police later established she had deleted 32 text messages and had her windscreen repaired before police had a chance to examine it.
Abedin eventually pleaded guilty to causing serious injury by dangerous driving and perverting the course of justice.
Her family initially did not know what she had done. However, as the investigation continued, they learned of her involvement.
She was arrested and interviewed 11 days after the collision and her lies were exposed.
Leicester Crown Court heard that her relatives withdrew their support for the matter being prosecuted in the courts.
Watch the Incident. Warning – Distressing Footage
Judge Robert Brown told the hit-and-run driver:
“I’m satisfied you were using your mobile phone.
“You collided with and caused a serious injury to your father-in-law. He went up over your bonnet and struck your windscreen before landing in the road.
“I’m quite satisfied you knew full well there had been an accident. You could not have reached any other conclusion.
“You did not stop. You did not offer to help. Others passing by stopped to help. You carried on.”
During the investigation, an innocent man whose car matched the one involved in the collision was arrested and spent an evening in custody.
Judge Brown continued: “It’s apparent to me that not only did you know you had been involved in a road traffic collision, but went to considerable lengths to cover up your involvement.
“An innocent man was arrested and detained overnight by the police on the basis that he was thought to be the driver.”
“Your father-in-law was taken to Leicester Royal Infirmary and spent a total of 11 days there.
“He sits in court today and has written a statement in which he expresses – and has always felt, I am sure – his love and affection for you.
“He stresses your importance to him, his wife and his family in your role as carer.
“He has clearly in his own way forgiven you for what happened that night.
“If you are sent into immediate custody I must have regard to the fact that could cause yet more pain to the victim of your crime.
“I have no desire to cause any further pain to him, but I have a public duty today.
“You did just about everything in your power to avoid responsibility for your behaviour until you were forced to make the admissions you have.
“You have pleaded guilty to perverting the course of justice and causing serious injury by dangerous driving.
“This was a deliberate and sustained attempt to avoid responsibility for what you had done.”
The Daily Mail reported that Abedin was jailed for a total of 18 months. She was also banned from driving for two years and nine months.