Phone row may have riled road-rage killer
Date published: 30 July 2014
A LORRY driver, found guilty of murder after driving his 17-ton truck over the head of a fellow motorist, may have been told to get off the phone in the moments leading up to the horror road-rage attack.
Mark Slater (46) and popular grandfather Trevor Allen (56) — who used to work as a lorry-driving instructor — clashed while driving along the A57 near Warrington in February.
When both vehicles had come to a halt on the single carriageway road, Mr Allen got out of his van and with outstretched arms, stood in front of the lorry, Chester Crown Court heard.
Slater, of Hillside Avenue, Oldham, claimed he did not see Mr Allen, from Swinton.
But the jury was told it would have been “obvious” to Slater that Mr Allen, a man of 16 stones and wearing a high-visibility jacket, was in front of him.
Forensic examinations showed the victim was then dragged underneath the vehicle with his head in the area of the front driver’s-side wheel.
Mr Allen’s family believe as a lorry-driving instructor, he may have indicated to Slater to get off the phone — sparking the fatal confrontation.
Slater showed no emotion when he was found guilty. He was remanded in custody and now faces an automatic life sentence.
Detective Inspector Peter Case, from Cheshire Police, said: “This is a unique case as it is the first time we have prosecuted a driver for murder in ‘road rage’ circumstances such as this.
“The injuries sustained by Mr Allen were horrific.”
To read the full version of this story see the Chronicle’s E-chron digital edition or buy the newspaper.
Have Your Say