A dangerous driver who reached “ludicrous” excessive speeds has been jailed for causing the death of a father-of-three in Hastings.
Ryan Selby, 23, showed a “flagrant disregard for the rules of the road” when he was driving on the A259 Rye Road, Hastings, on March 9, 2021
The driver was seen by witnesses overtaking several vehicles travelling towards Hastings, reaching estimated speeds of between 107mph and 113mph when his vehicle struck Mr Paxton.
He drove into the white cross-hatched area of the road where Mr Paxton was crossing the road, without braking, and struck him. Selby then stopped further up the road.
Mr Paxton tragically died at the scene from his injuries. His family described him as a “beloved husband, wonderful father, and cherished friend”.
Selby, a factory worker, of Burry Road, St Leonards, appeared before Lewes Crown Court on October 20 where he admitted causing death by dangerous driving.
He was sentenced to a total of seven and a half years in prison, and was disqualified from driving for eight years and three months.
Sussex Police is sharing the report of Selby’s sentencing to raise awareness of the danger of driving at excessive speed, which is one of the “fatal five” factors of why people are killed or seriously injured on our roads.
The court heard how the incident unfolded, with witnesses describing Selby driving “aggressively” to get past other drivers through Guestling.
He drove at high speed up the hill, but apparently did not see Mr Paxton because of the low setting sun.
Rule 237 of the Highway Code states: “If you are dazzled by bright sunlight, slow down and if necessary, stop.”
Her Honour Judge Christine Laing KC, sentencing, told Selby: “You showed a flagrant disregard for the rules of the road and for how dangerous your driving was to other road users, your utter disregard is staggering.
“I am in no doubt you did not see Oli Paxton due to your ludicrous speeds, despite the fact it was a residential area with two schools in the vicinity.
“You couldn’t have failed to know you were driving at a grossly excessive speed. You made a clear and obvious choice to drive at this speed.
“Your driving was so appalling that other road users changed their route home so they wouldn’t encounter you.”
Speaking after the case, investigator Tudor Wells from the Serious Collision Investigation Unit, said: “This incident has had a devastating impact on the family of a much-loved father and husband.
“Selby habitually drove recklessly, and on March 9, 2021, this had tragic consequences which demonstrate the appalling consequences of driving at excess speed.
“It is the responsibility of all motorists to ensure they abide by the speed limit and road safety laws, and to drive safely.”
Following the case, Mr Paxton’s wife Jill Paxton said: “This was never about justice – there isn’t justice for what we have lost.
“Ryan Selby has received close to the maximum sentence for the crime he was tried for but no amount of time in prison will heal the wounds he has caused.
“When Oli was killed, mine and my children’s lives were irreparably destroyed and sadly, the justice system cannot convict for this unaccounted damage.
“Oli was selfless, easy-going and authentic; a man of unending generosity, a devoted husband and a fun-loving father who can never be replaced.
“The sentence delivered by Judge Laing KC puts undoubted responsibility on Ryan Selby for Oli’s death, which I hope Ryan is now forced to accept.
“By speeding at 110mph in a 40mph zone, he showed a complete disregard for the lives of others and his reckless behaviour inevitably robbed me of my husband and my three young boys of their father.
“I can only hope that Ryan is haunted by this experience, preventing him from ever again inflicting danger on others.
“May Oli’s death serve as a reminder to those who take risks when driving. A car can be a lethal weapon and your actions could have unthinkable consequences.”