A young, heavily pregnant woman will have to give birth in jail after being sentenced over the death of her friend during a high-speed accident.
Then 18-year-old learner driver, Gemma Sargent, drove her friends from Ballarat to Geelong on New Year’s Eve in 2015. She has overtaken another car travelling at 130km/h, but she lost control of the car and crashed, which cost the life of her friend, Nathaniel Merritt-Price and seriously injuring another passenger, Jolene Bounday.
Ms Sargent also suffered a broken back, bruising and multiple lacerations during the crash.
Yesterday, Judge James Montgomery told the County Court of Victoria that Ms Sargent, now 20, and a few months away from giving birth, had been ‘showing off’ and attempting a manoeuvre that even an experienced driver would never dare try.
“You grossly overestimated your abilities as a driver. There was no need for you to pass a car that was itself driving 30km/h over the speed limit,” he said.
It is believed that Ms Sargent’s passengers had been begging her to slow down, the Herald Sun reported, but Ms Sargent reportedly refused.
Ms Sargent has been jailed for eight years for culpable driving causing death and negligent driving causing serious injury. She must serve a minimum of five years before being eligible for parole, and will give birth while behind bars.