Cornish family of hit-and-run victim back Theresa May's call for tougher sentences

150920- Ryan Saltern- ITV News West Country
Ryan Saltern, from Cornwall, died after he was struck by a car in July 2019.

A family from Cornwall has backed Theresa May’s call for life sentences for those convicted of causing death by dangerous driving.

Ryan Saltern, from Probus, died after he was struck by a vehicle and left on the B3267 in July 2019.

His family have campaigned for tougher sentences ever since the driver responsible - Wayne Shilling - pleaded guilty to failing to stop and failing to report the accident.

He received a four-month jail sentence, which was suspended for a year, disqualified from driving for 12 months and given an evening curfew for four months.

Ryan was 31-years-old.

On 3 February, former Prime Minister Mrs May asked the Government in Parliament if it would support her dangerous driving bill - which calls for life imprisonment of motorists found guilty of causing death by dangerous driving.

Shilling was not convicted of causing death by dangerous driving, but Ryan’s family have welcomed the news.

They are calling for a new standalone law - called 'Ryan's Law' - which will mean sentences cannot be suspended.

Currently, hit-and-run drivers face a maximum of six months in jail when there is no other evidence of careless or dangerous driving.

‘We want tougher sentences’ - family react

Ryan’s father Mark said: “It only strengthens our campaign going forward. We’re currently awaiting the debate date.

“We were always confident of hitting the 10,000 signatures to have the matter debated in Parliament. We knew we were going to do it, but it really picked up momentum at the end.

“We’re never going to stop fighting for Ryan and to make change under Ryan’s Law.

“I think they (politicians) will go on to look at all traffic offences and reconsider sentences because it’s time for change.

“What Theresa May said was encouraging and we hope the Government goes on to look at wider traffic offences. We just want tougher sentences to ensure justice is done.”

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