Police want people to watch the moment a innocent mum of five was killed by two drivers racing one another.
Harrowing footage shows two cars speeding through built-up areas and driving on the wrong side of the road as they race through Wigan before a huge collision.
Speeding down residential streets at about 70mph in a 30mph zone , Joseph Pownall, 27, was chasing Lewis Fisher, 21, after the window of Pownall’s Volkswagen Amarok was smashed at a nearby pub.
Their actions led to the death of Joanne Bailey-Collinge, 36; the serious injuries of her husband Andrew and her 13-year-old daughter and minor injuries of Mrs Bailey-Collinge’s four-year-old daughter, as they were on their way to a barbecue at a neighbour’s house.
Pownall was “intent on revenge” after one of Fisher’s friends had smashed the window of his car while it was parked near a pub, reports the Manchester Evening News.
After being informed of the damage, Pownall chased Fisher’s silver Mercedes C220, with the cars reaching speeds of more than twice the 30mph limit.
The judge said Pownall had rammed Fisher’s car from the back, as they drove dangerously close to each other.
Both cars lost grip and went on to the wrong side of the road, with the Mercedes crashing head on into Mrs Bailey-Collinge’s Volkswagen Polo on Bickershaw Lane, which also contained her husband in the passenger seat and two of their children in the back.
Mrs Bailey-Collinge suffered catastrophic injuries, and was pronounced dead hours later.
In a victim impact statement read to the court, her husband Andrew said: “Having seen how Joanne was, I knew she was dying and I couldn’t do anything at all.”
Judge Richard Mansell QC, who sentenced both defendants separately, told them both: “By your senseless act of aggression, you have brought unimaginable tragedy to bear on this family.
“A 36-year-old mother-of-five has been killed, her husband has been widowed, their two young girls and three other children of Joanne are now left to grow up without their mother.”
Attempt to pervert course of justice by reporting car as ‘stolen’
Following the crash, at about 5.30pm on April 20, Pownall drove away from the scene and persuaded an onlooker to drive him back to the Bryn Hall pub on Bolton Road, where they had been earlier.
In footage shown in court, the judge said Pownall could be seen “animatedly waving your arms about, apparently demonstrating to those present what had happened, and certainly displaying no remorse for what had happened”.
Prosecutor Andrew O’Byrne QC said that Pownall’s actions showed he was “almost revelling” in what had happened.
He called his 46-year-old stepbrother Steven Fairclough, and pleaded with him to report the Amarok, which Pownall had registered in Fairclough’s name to save money on insurance, as stolen.
He did so, but admitted what he had done to the police the following day.
Fairclough, of no fixed address, was spared jail, receiving a 12 month sentence suspended for a year, after admitting conspiracy to pervert the course of justice
Witness said driver in car chase ‘laughing’
Manchester Crown Court heard that there had previously been “hostility” between the Pownall family and the family of one of Fisher’s associates, prior to the window being smashed.
A witness to the chase said that she saw Fisher “laughing” as though he was “relishing the pursuit”.
His barrister Paul Treble said that Fisher was “frightened” and was trying to get away.
Judge Mansell told Fisher: “You took the conscious decision, admittedly in the heat of the moment and in a state of heightened anxiety, to drive as fast as you could to try and escape him.
“There were other courses of action open to you, including phoning the police, pulling off the main road or most obviously, slowing down to a speed close to the speed limit and simply stopping Pownall get past.”
The court heard that on Pownall’s Facebook page, a message had been posted stating: “You can lock the lock, but you can’t stop the clock.”
Judge Mansell said he accepted someone else had posted the message, which he described as “insensitive to say the least”, in Pownall’s name.
Pownall’s barrister Nigel Edwards QC said that Pownall has expressed “deep regret” for his actions, and said he knew Mrs Bailey-Collinge “through a friend”.
Mr Treble, for Fisher, who suffered a broken leg in the crash, said the defendant has displayed “genuine regret and remorse” for what happened.
Grieving family left with ‘own life sentence’
Fisher, of Poolstock Lane, Wigan, was found guilty by a jury of causing death by dangerous driving; causing death while driving unlicensed; causing death by driving while uninsured; and two counts of causing serious injury by dangerous driving.
Pownall, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving; causing serious injury by dangerous driving and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice ahead of Fisher’s trial.
Fisher was jailed for 11 years, while Pownall was jailed for 12 years.
The maximum sentence for causing death by dangerous driving is 14 years.
After the hearing in a statement released by his lawyers, Andrew Collinge, who wasn’t present in court for sentencing, said: “The past few days have been some of the hardest in my life.
“We all miss Joanne so much and it has been very difficult reliving the incident and everything that happened.
“She was the love of my life and such a great mum. We just can’t imagine our lives without her.
“The people responsible for Joanne’s death have left us with our own life sentence and my daughters now have to grow up without their mum.
“While we know nothing will ever bring her back, we needed these answers and hope that lessons are learned from this incident.
“Motorists need to remember that the safety of themselves, other drivers and pedestrians should always be a key concern when they are on the road.
“I wouldn’t wish what we are going through on any other family, and it is vital that the issues seen in this crash are never repeated in future.”
The family have instructed law firm Irwin Mitchell following the conclusion of the criminal case.