A man who admitted killing a 10-year-old girl in a hit-and-run crash has been jailed for seven years and four months.

Connor Marsden ploughed into Melissa Tate on a road in Newcastle in September.

Connor Marsden has admitted to causing death by dangerous driving Credit: Northumbria Police

She died in hospital from her injuries.

Marsden, 24, of Kenton, in the city, had previously pleaded guilty to death by dangerous driving, causing death while uninsured, and causing death by driving without a licence.

Marsden has also admitted summary charges of failure to stop, failure to report an accident to the police, driving otherwise in accordance with a licence and driving without insurance.

Melissa's parents, Michael Tate and Kimberley Wilson, had earlier paid tribute to their daughter, saying she had "a heart of gold".

They also revealed that Melissa had gone on to save the lives of other children after the family made the difficult decision to donate her organs.

In a statement released following her death, Melissa's family said:

Melissa was a beautiful, smart, funny, cheeky and laid-back girl who had a heart of gold and not a bad bone in her body.

Melissa's Family
Melissa with her sister, Lili Credit: Family Photo

Melissa was a volunteer with Northumbria Police.

Her Mini Police number was retired in tribute to her.

Sergeant Nicola MacGregor said: "As a member of our extended police family, we will continue to help both her family and the school in any way we can.

"We hope that we can continue the excellent community work started by the Mini Police in her memory."

Melissa Tate in her Mini Police uniform Credit: Northumbria Police

Melissa's parents have previously spoken of their pride at Melissa joining the Mini Police.

Mum Kim said: "Melissa was so excited to be part of the Mini Police and I was so proud that I saw her in her uniform.

"She was a really kind girl who just wanted to help people so it didn't surprise me she wanted to be part of it."