Motorist Jailed After Killing Pedestrian In Colliers Wood

Despite numerous warnings, he suffered a fit at the wheel

A motorist who struck and killed a pedestrian in Colliers Wood has been jailed for three-and-a-half years.

Stuart Lusher, aged 56, of Benhill Wood Road, Sutton, was sentenced after pleading guilty at Kingston Crown court on Wednesday (July 20) to causing death by dangerous driving. 

On 27 June 2015, Lusher was driving a Mazda SUV on Merantun Way, near the Tandem Centre.

At about 1.40pm he stopped at a red traffic light and it was there he suffered an epileptic seizure at the wheel. This seizure caused him to drive onto the pavement and collide with a pedestrian, who was struck from behind. 

The court heard how the pedestrian, 48-year-old Phil Westnott, was trapped by the car after it mounted the footway, and suffered a catastrophic head injury. He was pronounced dead at the scene. 

A police investigation established that Lusher had a history of epilepsy and chronic sleep apnoea and had ignored numerous medical warnings from medical professionals not to drive.

Despite these warnings he had driven his wife's car to visit her in hospital where she was gravely ill.

After pleading guilty at court, Lusher also received a life ban from driving.

Victim Phil Westnottt had recently moved to Cheam, but his parents lived near the accident scene in Colliers Wood.

Detective Sergeant Jeff Edwards, of the Met's Serious Collision Investigation Unit, said: "I must firstly pay tribute to family of Mr Westnott for their dignity and courage during this difficult investigation.

"Mr Lusher's decision to drive, despite warnings from medical staff, resulted in a terrible collision that cost an innocent man his life. The consequences of that day have resulted in an innocent man losing a life and now Mr Lusher losing his liberty."

July 21, 2016

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