Two sisters killed by dangerous driver who hit speeds of 100mph

The sisters - who were known as Maddie and Libby to their loved ones - had popped out of their family home to get some soft drinks from a nearby shop Credit: Avon and Somerset Police

A dangerous driver has been jailed for 10 years after killing two "vibrant" and "fun-loving" sisters.

Madison and Liberty North, aged 21 and 17, had been celebrating together on the evening of Tuesday 25 July because Maddie was due to graduate the following day.

The sisters - who were known as Maddie and Libby to their loved ones - had popped out of their family home to get some soft drinks from a nearby shop when their car collided with Thomas Lenthall's.

Lenthall had been driving in excess of 100mph along the A361 Frome Bypass when his Audi RS6 crashed into the VW Polo the sisters were travelling in.

Maddie and Libby both died at the scene.

In a victim impact statement, their parents Verity and Jason North described their daughters as two "of the most vibrant, fun-loving, beautiful girls".

They said everything "felt perfect" on the day of their deaths.

"Maddie, her sister Libby and the whole family were so excited and proud she was graduating as a teacher, achieving her childhood dream," they said.

"Family were invited, the party was arranged, everything felt perfect.

"Maddie and Libby popped out for a Coke, and they never came home.

"It is every parent's worst nightmare - their lives were taken. Our innocent, precious daughters, at such young ages, were just beginning to live their best lives and fulfil their dreams.

"In a heartbeat, everything changed. They had been killed by the reckless dangerous driving of another."

At the time of the collision, Lenthall had been overtaking another car when he crashed head-on into Maddie's car.

The girls' parents described the horror of seeing their daughter's faces stationary on a location app at the scene of the accident before driving to the scene.

"Pulling up beside the police officer asking if he could help me. He tried to divert me [not realising we were family], but I said I needed his help. I told him my daughters were showing that they were along the stretch of road.

"He asked my name, and once he heard it, his face changed only to be told my daughters were involved and it was fatal.

"I remember thinking 'what did I just hear?'

Maddie and Libby's parents said Lenthall has "stolen" the chances they had to see them get married and become mothers.

"How do you comprehend those words? Our world fell apart in that instance as the police drove me home to break this tragic news that has literally broken our hearts. Everything we lived for, our beautiful daughters, was gone."

They described the deaths leaving the entire family as heartbroken and numb.

They said: "Getting out of bed is painful, having to live this nightmare over and over again every day… our futures have been destroyed.

"[Thomas Lenthall] has robbed us of seeing Maddie as a teacher and Libby as a nursery teacher. They loved their jobs very much."

They described their home as "painfully quiet", adding: "We want justice for our girls and hope that is given fairly and in deep reflection and compassion of what losing our precious girls has done to us and our family."

After the crash, Lenthall was taken to hospital with serious injuries and was later arrested.

He has since admitted two counts of causing death by dangerous driving.

During a hearing at Bristol Crown Court on Thursday 14 December, Lenthall, of no fixed abode, was jailed for 10 years.

Thomas Lenthall admitted two counts of causing death by dangerous driving. Credit: Avon and Somerset Police

Sentencing, His Honour Judge James Patrick said the North family's world had fallen apart at their desperate loss. He ordered that Lenthall should serve a minimum two-thirds of his sentence, and disqualified him from driving for seven years.

Lead investigator from Avon and Somerset Police's collision investigation unit, Carl Derosa, said: "This is a tragic case where two young ladies, with their whole lives ahead of them, were cruelly taken too soon from their parents and family.

"The reckless actions of one man have left two parents without their children and a hole in their lives which no sentence will be able to fill.

"I can only hope this sentence will go some way to providing justice for Maddie and Libby's family.

"My team worked through the night to bring this case before the courts so quickly and we thank everyone for their support in making this sentence possible.

"I would like to extend my heartfelt condolences to Jason and Verity and I hope Lenthall understands the ramifications of his actions that day."