Died 4th May 2013
Audrey Gray (50) from Govan was run over and killed at 3.35pm on 4th May 2013 in a hit-and-run incident in McGregor Street, near the Ibrox Stadium in Govan, Glasgow, Scotland.
In August 2014, John Henderson (55) was jailed for three years after being convicted of causing death by dangerous driving at the High Court in Edinburgh. He was also banned from driving for five years. He had initially been charged with Ms Gray’s murder.
Henderson claimed the car he was driving “lurched” forward after his foot slipped off the clutch while he was adjusting his car seat. He said he remembered feeling a “big bump”, but that he had not meant to hit Ms Gray. Henderson claimed he stopped the vehicle close to the scene – but didn’t go to help. Asked why, he told the court: “I honestly don’t know – shock, panic. My thought processes had just gone.”
Henderson was arrested the next day.
The court heard that Ms Gray was run over shortly after Henderson had been at a Rangers football match. He had left Ibrox Stadium having watched his team Rangers winning the Division Three title.
Jobeth Boyle (16), a friend of Ms Gray, told the jury how she witnessed Ms Gray being struck. She said: “When he (Henderson) turned the wheel around, the side of the car hit her then drove over her and then away.”
Ms Boyle said she raced to help Ms Gray and “just said her name” to try and rouse her. She then phoned for an ambulance using her friend’s phone. Other passers-by also came to the aid of Ms Gray, but she never recovered from her injuries. She was pronounced dead on arrival at the city’s Southern General Hospital.
The jury was told that Ms Gray had been spotted shouting towards the car Henderson was in shortly before the collision. She appeared to shout at Henderson and others as they got in the car.
Henderson claimed to be a careful and competent driver and to have been under “duress”. that day. He said he made “errors”.
Note: This report was drawn from reports in the BBC.
We are deeply concerned about remarks by the judge Lord Carloway, which seemed both critical of Ms Gray and sympathetic to her killer. The judge said he had to sentence on the verdict of the jury while pointing out that causing death by dangerous driving was a serious offence. He told Henderson: “I don’t think I can do other than impose a custodial sentence in your case.” adding that he was taking into “account the conduct of the deceased which was undoubtedly reprehensible in the manner she approached your car.” He also said “I take into account the fact that you are a first offender and I accept also you are a hard-working person who before this event led a blameless life.”
The judge is not reported as having said anything about Ms Gray other than the reference to her allegedly “reprehensible” conduct. This conduct does not seem to have included any form of physical violence. The media have not reported what she shouted, but it could never excuse or justify running over her and then failing to stop and assist.
FOD has struggled to find information about Ms Gray, the victim in this case. As so often happens, media reports have provided far more detail about the perpetrator of the crime.