Jury out in Jack Bellis death trial

Warrington Guardian: Gareth Jones Gareth Jones

THE jury has gone out to consider its verdict in the trial of a Widnes man accused of killing Padgate motorcyclist Jack Bellis in a fatal crash.

Proceedings at Chester Crown Court have finished for the day but will resume on Tuesday morning.

The 12 members of the jury will continue to deliberate on whether to find Gareth Jones David Owen Jones, aged 23, guilty of causing death by dangerous driving.

An alternative verdict of causing death by careless or inconsiderate driving is also being considered.

Jones, a highliy qualified driver for the Army, denies causing the death of Mr Bellis on October 14, 2012, on Domino Court, Runcorn.

Guiding the jury, Judge Thomas Teague QC said they must consider Jones’ driving to be a ‘more than negligible cause’ of Mr Bellis’ death.

Judge Teague said to be guilty of death by dangerous driving, Jones actions behind the wheel of his Ford Focus did not have to be ‘the only, or even the main cause’ of the 19-year-old’s death.

His driving, however, must be deemed to have fallen ‘far below’ the standards you would expect from a ‘competent driver’, said Judge Teague.

He added for Jones to be guilty of death by careless or inconsiderate driving, his driving must have to ‘fallen below’ what you would expect, but ‘not far below’.

The defendant has pleaded not guilty to both counts, having argued Mr Bellis was to blame for the crash.

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