Mother of Chloe Hayman who was killed in horror crash says jail term for drug driver is an 'insult'

  • Report by ITV Wales Correspondent, Richard Morgan

The mother of a 17-year-old girl who was killed in a crash by a drug driver, says his sentence is an "insult".

Chloe Hayman, from Mountain Ash, died after Keilan Roberts, 22, consumed a cocktail of drugs - including ketamine, cocaine and ecstasy - in July 2022.

Chloe, who was a passenger in Roberts' car, had been on a night out with friends in Fochriw, Caerphilly.

Roberts, from Rhymney, was sentenced to three years and nine months in prison at Cardiff Crown Court in June 2023 after admitting four charges of causing death by careless driving.

Chloe Hayman, 17, died when driver Keilan Roberts, 22, crashed his car while high on ecstasy and cocaine in Caerphilly, in July last year Credit: Gwent Police Force/ Family photo

Speaking exclusively to ITV News, Chloe's mother Danielle O'Halloran said she is looking to appeal his sentence.

"With the twenty-five per cent off for admitting and serving only half, it means he is out next year," she said.

"I don't think that is enough for anyone to sit and work on anything. It is quite insulting really, for anyone to be able to make a choice like he did and take a life, then just be given until next year.

"There are drug dealers and people that have done far less than that, who get much longer. I don't understand it. I don't understand how he can be just given such a small amount of time."

Adjusting to life without Chloe has been traumatic for her family who have described her as a "beautiful, kind, loving daughter". They "miss her noise" in the house.

Danielle said: "I certainly miss her bossiness. Her telling me what to do. I miss her singing , I miss her taking my clothes. I miss everything about her.

Danielle added: "She was just a light, no matter how difficult or challenging she could have ever have been, she was just a light for me and a reason to just keep going."

Chloe's mother admits thinking back to the day police came to her home and told her what had happened to her daughter, "triggers trauma". She said it is a day she will "never forget".

"I was here on my own, they said are you Chloe's mum?" Danielle remembered.

"They came in. I stood up, they told me I needed to sit down because my daughter had been in a road traffic collision.

"They said that she had passed away. At that time, my whole world just fell from me.

"I had no control, I had no words. I had no feeling other than pain in my heart and stomach. I could not look at anyone. I did not know what to do. I said 'no, no this can't be happening'. I said I want to go and see her. They said I couldn't.

"I ran down the lane. I covered myself in leaves, plants, anything. I didn't know what to do. I was screaming. I was just out of control of any emotional feeling other than my heart had just been ripped out of my body and there was nothing I could do about it.

Danielle has said her family have been devastated by the loss of Chloe.

"At that moment as a mother, you feel nothing. When I knew that he [Keilan Roberts] was alive and she had been in the car with someone else, you instantly feel angry.

"At the time I did not know he had been drinking or taken drugs, but you feel angry. Why my child?

Danielle admitted it might look like she is ok from the outside but "on the inside, it's a different story".

She said: "It affects everything, your job, the financial way of life, the way you look at life. I didn't want to leave my little boy to go away to work.

"I loved working away and I loved events. I could never leave them now. But I think my memories with them are more important than making money."

  • Danielle O'Halloran discusses how her other children have been coping with Chloe's death.

Danielle hopes by talking about the impact of Keilan Roberts' actions it will help raise awareness and encourage people to change their behaviour. She wants all drivers who are stopped for drink driving, to be drug tested too.

She said: "If someone is stopped for drink driving, always drug test them. There are plenty of people that do get drug tested, by the third and fourth time, you should be maybe going down the police station to do a test."

Danielle added: "how many people in this day and age just go to a pub and just drink? Not many. Life isn't like it was when I was younger. It is accepted now.

She is concerned that too many young people are still taking unnecessary risks when going out for the night and is urging them to plan ahead how they intend to get home.

She added: "Don't leave your car in a place where you would think 'oh maybe I should get the car'. Leave it at home, get a taxi. If you cannot afford a taxi then don't go, have a drink in the house, if you need to, have a drink in the garden."

Danielle says she misses 'everything' about Chloe Credit: Family photograph

The court case brought the family face to face with Keilan Roberts for the first time and despite her ordeal, Danielle said she is working on how to forgive Roberts.

"That is not saying that what they have done is ok and that is not saying I am ok with it," she explained.

"It means that I will not allow that person to anger me. I take ownership of my own anger and hurt. That person does not control that in my mind.

"I don't think he got up that morning with the intention to do that. But what I do know, whatever lifestyle he was living, throughout that time, had a detrimental effect on my daughter and on us.

"That is certainly something that he needs to sit and understand and work with."

Danielle added: "I hope that whatever time he serves and after - he will look at changing his life.

"I hope that he can make changes. That he can see that alcohol and drugs they don't put you in a mindset at that time where you are able to make the right decision."

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