Jail for minibus driver who killed jaywalker

Judge says accident may have been avoided had he slowed down rather than sounding horn

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 11 January, 2014, 4:12am
UPDATED : Saturday, 11 January, 2014, 4:53am

The driver of a minibus that knocked down and killed a jaywalking woman was sent to jail for seven months yesterday.

District Court Judge Douglas Yau Tak-hong told a remorseful Cheung Shu-man, 67, that had he slowed down when the woman ran onto the road, instead of just sounding his horn, the accident might have been avoided.

Cheung, who pleaded guilty to dangerous driving causing the death of Mok Shiu-ling, 65, was also disqualified from driving for five years.

"I accept that Cheung is truly remorseful and that his family members feel sad about the accident," the judge said.

"However, these sorrows will never compare to those of the victim's family who lost their loved one."

The court heard Mok ran onto the road at the junction of Tsui Ping Road and Hip Wo Street in Kwun Tong on April 12, 2013, after the pedestrian crossing light had turned red. Cheung, who was about 22 metres from Mok, maintained his speed of about 47km/h and sounded his horn, but Mok kept on and was hit.

Mok's daughter told the police her mother had hearing problems and might not have heard the horn.

The judge noted that Cheung, a hard-working man who preferred to earn his living rather than apply for public assistance, had felt so guilty that he stopped driving the minibus after the accident.

But he said a prison term was inevitable as a life had been lost.

Cheung acknowledged in court that he had made a wrong decision in relying on his horn rather than slowing down.

Mok suffered fractures to her head, neck, left shoulder and pelvis. She was dead on arrival at hospital.

Cheung's lawyer told the court that the former driver felt so guilty that he recited Buddhist scriptures every night to beg for redemption.

Although he was poor enough to apply for public assistance, Cheung had taken a job as a watchman.