Cleveland Police officer denies driving without due care after teenagers seriously injured in crash

The incident last May left an 18-year-old man badly hurt and a 17-year-old girl with life-changing injuries. Credit: GAZETTE MEDIA COMPANY SYNDICATION

A Cleveland Police officer has appeared in court charged in connection with a crash which left two teenagers seriously injured.

It is alleged that PC David Simon French drove a police van without due care and attention on Grewgrass Lane, New Marske , in the early hours of 22 May.

A police van and a Vauxhall Corsa collided, before the Corsa flipped on its side and set alight.

Two officers were also taken to hospital for treatment following the crash and discharged.

The incident left an 18-year-old man badly hurt and a 17-year-old girl with life-changing injuries.

During the hearing at Teesside Magistrates' Court, French spoke only to confirm his name, address and date of birth. The Redcar man entered a not guilty plea to the charge of driving without due care and attention.

The trial will take place on March 10 next year at Teesside Magistrates' Court.

French was granted unconditional bail until he next appears in court. The case was heard in front of a packed public gallery on Friday morning.

The case comes after an investigation by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC). A mandatory referral was made to the police watchdog following the crash in the early hours of 22 May.

In October, the IOPC concluded its investigation and referred the case to the Crown Prosecution Service, which authorised the charge. On Thursday, a spokesperson for the IOPC said: "We received a mandatory referral from the force following the incident on Grewgrass Lane, on 22 May 2022, in which a police van and Vauxhall Corsa collided.

"The occupants of the Corsa, an 18-year-old man and a 17-year-old girl, both suffered serious injuries. Following the conclusion of our investigation, in October 2022 we referred the case to the Crown Prosecution Service, which authorised the charge."


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