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Stourbridge driver cleared of causing motorcyclist's death
10:35am Thursday 6th February 2014 in Local
A 34-YEAR-OLD Stourbridge driver has been cleared of causing the death of a motorcyclist after a jury was told the rider could have been exceeding the speed limit.
It had been alleged Steven Parkes had not been paying careful attention when he turned into a junction off the Birmingham New Road at Coseley.
But witnesses in evidence told Wolverhampton Crown Court that Antony Corbett's Yamaha was travelling faster than the 40mph limit.
Parkes, of Cobden Street, denied causing the death by careless driving of Mr Corbett, of Dudley, who suffered fatal injuries in the collision on October 25 last year.
After retiring for two hours 28 minutes to consider the evidence at the end of his three-day trial the three man-nine woman jury unanimously decided he was not guilty.
Howard Searle, prosecuting, had claimed Parkes made a "mistake in judgement" when he turned right into Ivyhouse Lane in his VW van.
He said another driver who had been travelling behind Parkes had seen the approaching motor bike and "wondered what he was doing" when he drove into the junction.
West Midlands Police traffic collision investigator PC Steve Jubb also told the jury the level of damage pointed to the accident being "low speed".
"Having seen the damage to the back of the van I did not think it was at particularly high speed," maintained the officer.
But one witness who was behind Parkes said he thought the motorcycle was travelling at least 50mph while another felt the machine could have been travelling at 70mph.
Parkes told the jury he had been on his way to pick up a friend to take him to work. He stressed he had taken every precaution when he drove into Ivyhouse Lane and said he had not seen the approaching motorcycle.