THREE friends have been jailed after a Quarry Bank woman died following a fall from a car bonnet in Dudley.

Ellie Underhill was sitting on the bonnet of a Vauxhall Corsa being driven around the car park of Tesco Extra in Birmingham Road on December 26, 2016.

The 20-year-old was flung from the car causing extensive skull fractures and brain damage. She died from her injuries in hospital on January 3.

Despite Ellie being in a critical condition and bleeding heavily, Hickman, Ross Bingham and Elly Phillips decided not to take her straight to the hospital, instead placing her in the back of their car and heading to a McDonalds.

Almost an hour later, the trio arrived at Russell Hall Hospital, claiming Ellie had fallen over while drunk and later telling her family ‘it wasn’t very serious’.

For days, the group repeatedly lied to the family and even visited Ellie’s family on several occasions.

The friends even accompanied Ellie’s brother to show him where she had allegedly fallen. However, the pressure got too much for them and over a week after the incident, Bingham opened up to Ellie's brother to reveal exactly what had happened.

Hickman, Bingham and Phillips were arrested on suspicion of manslaughter and perverting the course of justice on January 5, 2017.

When asked why it took so long to get Ellie to hospital, Hickman made up an excuse that he was doing a drugs ‘drop off’.

Today (Tuesday) at Stoke Crown Court, Luke Hickman, aged 19, of Wassell Road, Wollescote, was jailed for a total of seven years and 10 months after pleading guilty to death by dangerous driving, conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and an additional unrelated dangerous driving matter.

Ross Bingham, aged 21, of Hagley Road, Erdington, and Elly Phillips aged 19, of Seymour Road, Wollescote, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.

Phillips was jailed for six months. Bingham’s sentencing has been delayed as he had no legal representation in court and is due to be sentenced tomorrow (Wednesday).

Hana Edwards, aged 19, the girlfriend of Hickman, pleaded guilty to perverting the course of justice and was sentenced to a 18 month community order with a 150 hours unpaid work requirement.

In a statement released via West Midlands Police, Ellie's family said: “We have waited since the 26 December 2016 for this day and no matter what the sentence is, justice will never be served.

“Contrary to reports in the media, we as her family would like it to be known that none of the defendants informed us as her family, the emergency services or the police of the true events that actually occurred that night.

“This ultimately delayed any important and immediate medical attention which should have been provided to our daughter. The actions and lies of those involved are unforgivable and no family should ever have to go through this.

“The laws concerning our daughter’s death are outdated and need modernising for today’s society as soon as possible to stop anymore untimely young deaths.

“Such a loving and vibrant life was taken from us far too soon. We love you Ellie and you are truly missed. God bless.”

Sergeant Alan Wood from the force's Serious Collision Investigation Unit added: “This is a tragic case where a young woman has sadly lost her life following a night out celebrating.

“Following a highly dangerous act resulting in appalling consequences, these three decided against telling the truth, choosing instead to cover up what actually happened with utterly disgraceful lies in an attempt cover up what was a serious crime.

“Our thoughts remain with Ellie’s family who have had to suffer the consequences both of the actions of Hickman and the callous lies told afterwards.

"Although no sentence will bring Ellie back, I hope it is offers some comfort to them and can help them rebuild their lives."