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Father lives in hope of finding daughter who vanished 16 years ago

The father of a young woman from Kent who disappeared abroad, is seeking the help of the father of Lucie Blackman who was murdered in Japan, to end the sixteen-year-old mystery.

Louise Kerton left Germany, bound for her home in Broadstairs, and then vanished. Her father, Phil, has never given up hope. Now he hopes that with the help of Tim Blackman, he may yet find new clues that could solve the mystery that has come to dominate his life.

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Trucker jailed for crash which left 3 year-old and unborn baby brother dead

Thomas Hunter has been jailed for six years for causing the death of three-year-old Isla Wiggin by dangerous driving.

The court heard Hunter was travelling at 54mph and only tried to brake a second before running into the line of cars on the A34 in Oxfordshire.

Isla from Fleet in Hampshire, died in a collision on the A34 in Hinksey Hill, Oxfordshire, on 25 August. Her unborn brother also died as a result of the collision.

At the time Isla's family issued a statement saying she was "a loving and caring" daughter who "would have made an amazing big sister".

A lorry and seven cars were involved in the accident, which closed the northbound carriageway for almost 10 hours.

Isla Wiggin Credit: The Wiggin family

Man jailed for driving at 130mph and ploughing into police cars

A drunk driver who ploughed into three police cars at speeds of up to 130 miles an hour has been jailed for two years.

58-year-old, Martin Ralfs from Southampton, rammed into the marked police cars during a high speed chase along the M27 and A31, through the New Forest, in April.

Martin Ralfs jailed for two years Credit: Hampshire Police

Ralfs was seen speeding and swerving across lanes along the M27 in the early hours in his Honda Accord at an estimated 90mph

When police tried to stop him Ralfs tried to overtake, ramming the police car and driving off at around 100mph, rising to 129mph

Knowing that the car was heading back towards the M27, three police cars from the Roads Unit carried out a tactical containment in a bid to stop Ralfs safely.

However he refused to slow down and crashed into the back of two of the police cars.

One spun and crashed into the central reservation and the other one spun into the carriageway, both losing a rear wheel and suffering extensive damage.

The Honda came to a stop on the hard shoulder, Ralfs, who suffered minor injuries, was arrested.

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The court heard how he later failed a roadside breath test and further tests revealed he was over the drink-drive limit.

The three officers involved suffered whiplash injuries and bruising. Ralfs was sentenced to 12 months in prison for dangerous driving and three months for drink-driving

He was also given a total of 12 months in prison for breaching the restraining order. This will run consecutively with the dangerous driving sentence, meaning he was sentenced to a total of two years in prison.

It was sheer luck that no one was seriously injured or killed as a result of Mr Ralfs’ reckless driving.

Fortunately, our highly trained roads policing officers were able to deploy specialist tactics to stop his dangerous driving and take him off our roads before anyone was seriously hurt.

His attempts to evade our officers were ultimately futile and I hope that this sentencing sends a clear message to anyone who thinks that drink-driving or speeding is worth the risk – it is not and the consequences can be fatal. He pleaded guilty to dangerous driving and driving while alcohol level above limit.

– Sgt Mark Furse

Woody Woodpecker climbs bird equivalent of Everest to return to nest

Woody had a lucky escape after plunging 30ft from his nest as he leant forward to grab a snack from his mum's beak.

Still unable to fly, poor Woody overbalanced and fell out of the nest, plummeting 30 ft down the tree into dense brambles.

It was all caught on camera by amateur photographer Ian Curtis, while out walking in Wolvercote lakes, Oxon he thought Woody may have had his chips.

Can I have breakfast Mum Credit: Ian Curtis
Woody leans forward to reach for the food Credit: Ian Curtis

Over a couple of days I realised they were 2 nestlings …who would take it in turns to peer out of the hole, calling for food.

The Parents would arrive, beak full of insects, and climb into the hole.

As the chicks grew larger and stronger, the parents would feed them at the front of the hole, stuffing insects into their gaping mouths..

Predictably the chicks were very demanding and - whichever was at the hole entrance - would stretch out their necks when they saw the parents flying towards them.

– Ian Curtis
Going Credit: Ian Curtis

Then, whoops, it happened. One youngster did overreach, over-enthusiastically and was suddenly spread-eagled against the bark, apparently desperately hanging on.

As well as hanging on with its claws, the half-grown wings were pressed against the trunk for extra support.

I stood there thinking, Oh my gosh - what do I do now. But there was 15-20 foot of dense brambles so I couldn't help. I just sat and waited.

– Ian Curtis
Gone... Woody fell into dense bramble Credit: Ian Curtis

There was a deathly silence. Ian thought the parents may fly down with food, but no. Ian was beginning to fear the worst when he saw a flutter of wings on a tree trunk

Woody bravely clambers back up the tree Credit: Ian Curtis

I had been assuming the worst. That the beady-eyed magpies or crows would swoop in and put an end to Woody

But his sibling back in the hole was. Shouting for parents and food Woody had something to home in on. Even so, it must have looked like a bit of an Everest effort.

After a few efforts of a clamber forwards, clamber sideways,half a clamber backwards, I realised Woody was making serious progress. Woody was, however, climbing the “wrong” tree.

Still, at least he could see home. And you could see going through a human’s mind it would have been ”I just need to flutter across this canyon to get to the other side”. He did and was able to grab hold and begin the final ascent.

When he did make it back to his home, he clambered onto the top of the trunk and sat down for a rest .

– Ian Curtis
Safely back home Credit: Ian Curtis
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