A hit-and-run driver who killed an elderly woman in a high-speed crash with a car he had stolen has been jailed for 15 years.
Young father Conor Dobson, now 24, stole a black Mercedes AMG and drove at a “grossly excessive speed”, using the A24 near Horsham, West Sussex, as a “race track”, Judge Jeremy Gold said.
He smashed the car into Rebecca Nevins’ red Ford Fiesta at speeds of at least 135mph on 10 November last year.
The collision caused former nurse Mrs Nevins’ car and another black Peugeot 207 she had been overtaking at 47mph, to spin into each other, while Dobson crashed into the central reservation.
She died shortly after her 70th birthday.
Dobson then fled to London by flagging down a passing van and claiming he was being chased after a fight, persuading the driver to take him to a train station where he then travelled to London.
Police arrested him two days later after identifying him from DNA left on the airbag of the car.
He had travelled to Sussex with 18-year-old Isaac McFayden in a different A-class Mercedes, which was stolen in London six months earlier, prosecutor Dale Sullivan told the court.
The pair raided a house in Goring-by-Sea at around 1.15pm on the day of the collision, hoping to take keys belonging to an Audi parked in the driveway, but failing to find them.
Instead they took the Mercedes AMG – worth around £30,000 – from a nearby home shortly after, as well as other valuables.
Officers gave chase at 2.20pm after spotting them stopping for petrol at a service station off the A24.
They lost Dobson soon afterwards and were not in “active pursuit” of his car at the time of the collision, the court heard.
When he approached the crash scene he was driving at between 137mph and 147mph in a 60mph limit zone.
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Dobson admitted manslaughter and burglary. Two other burglary offences were left to lie on file.
Handing him an extended sentence to serve an extra three years on licence, Judge Gold said he would not be considered for parole until he had served 10 years behind bars and banned him from driving for three years after his release.
The court heard of his “appalling record” of previous offending, including a “similar scenario” in 2013, as well as burglary, car thefts and other driving offences.
McFayden, of Feltham, pleaded guilty to burglary, dangerous driving, theft of a motor vehicle, driving without a licence or insurance and handling stolen goods.
He was handed a 26-month custodial sentence in a young offenders’ institution and fined £700. He was disqualified from driving for two years after his release.