A hit-and-run driver who seriously injured a nine-year-old boy has been jailed for three years, police have said.
Nathan Limbachia, 25, unemployed, from Crawley, was convicted of causing serious injury by dangerous driving at Lewes Crown Court on Friday (July 14), said police.
The boy’s father said it meant ‘justice had been served’ and thanked the emergency services who had helped his family at the scene and officers who had later brought the case to court.
Limbachia pleaded guilty to failing to stop at the scene of a collision, failing to report a collision, driving without a licence and no insurance.
He admitted careless driving but denied dangerous driving.
A Sussex Police spokesman said: “The incident occurred on March 18, last year on the A23 Crawley Avenue, Crawley, when an Audi S4 being driven south at speed smashed into the rear of a Volkswagen Golf just before Cheals roundabout.
“So severe was the impact that Zakariya Razak, nine, was flung from the VW, sustaining serious injuries.
“The VW was being driven by his grandmother at the time. Zakariya’s younger brother and sister were also passengers in the car, and all suffered injuries.
“Limbachia fled from the scene but was eventually traced and arrested nearby.”
PC Shirley Ross, said: “This has been a long and complicated investigation. Throughout, Limbachia attempted to conceal his involvement and avoid taking responsibility for his dangerous driving and ultimately causing this devastating collision.”
Before sentencing Limbachia, Judge Barnes commented on the ‘most horrendous damage to a law-abiding family that night’.
She remarked on his ‘reckless and terrible decisions’ and told him: “You should feel ashamed of what you did.”
Zakariya’s father Mr Mahomed Razak said: “My wife and I would like to thank all the considerate members of the public who were at the scene seconds after the accident took place and assisted my family, followed by the police, ambulance and fire crews who arrived shortly after.
“We are deeply grateful and would really like to thank everybody personally. Also a big thank you to the witnesses who took time out of their lives to give evidence.
“We are very pleased with the police investigation and to see the person who put our family’s lives at risk and left them for dead was finally brought to justice.
“We hope that the outcome will strongly deter individuals from driving dangerously so that no one person or family has to go through the trauma we experienced.”
In addition to the sentence for motoring offences, Limbachia was jailed for a further six months for possessing drugs with intent to supply.
He had pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing.
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