Driver used car 'as a weapon' to kill pedestrian Rebecca Steer near Oswestry takeaway, jury told

Rebecca Steer was hit by a car near a takeaway in Willow Street, Oswestry Credit: Handout

A driver turned his Volvo into a "weapon" to kill a 22-year-old woman when he mounted a footpath outside a takeaway, a murder trial at Stafford Crown Court has heard.

Stephen McHugh denies the murder of pedestrian Rebecca Steer but admits her manslaughter, after she was dragged under his car in the centre of Oswestry, Shropshire.

McHugh has admitted assault causing injury to Kyle Roberts, who was also hit by his car, but denies attempting to cause him grievous bodily harm with intent.

Opening the facts of the Crown’s case against McHugh, of Artillery Road, Park Hall, near Oswestry, prosecutor Kevin Hegarty KC said the 28-year-old was driving a gold-coloured Volvo in Willow Street at about 2.45am on Sunday October 9 last year.

Rebecca Steer was killed in October last year Credit: West Mercia Police/PA

'He used the power and the weight of the car to strike the group'

Alleging that McHugh stopped in the road and "exchanged words" with a group of people near the Grill Out takeaway, Mr Hegarty told the court: "At that moment Rebecca Steer was crossing Willow Street.

"All of a sudden, as she was crossing, the Volvo shot backwards. It narrowly missed her."

Jurors were told Ms Steer managed to get out of the way of the car and made her way to the pavement on the opposite side of Willow Street.

Mr Hegarty added: "At that moment Mr McHugh turned the steering wheel in the direction of the people on the pavement and then he drove on to the pavement towards that group of people.

"The driver’s side of the car went on to the kerb, on to the footpath, and he proceeded to drive through the group.

"We say he used his car as a weapon – he used the power and the weight of the car to strike the group."

McHugh’s vehicle hit three people, the court heard, including two men who were “knocked aside” by the front wing.

Mr Hegarty told the court: "Rebecca Steer was more towards the front of the car and as the car increased its speed – as it went through the group, she was dragged down under the car.

"The car then went over her – which is to say one or more of the wheels went over her.

"She was crushed – in effect she was left with rib fractures and catastrophic internal injuries."

The trial continues.