Login Register

'I've lost my leg – so he should go to jail'

By West Briton  |  Posted: September 12, 2013

  • Ruth Kimpton, 78, left, who lost her leg in a horrific car accident, and above, the Picasso car embedded in the Betfred shop window after crashing into her.

Comments (4)

A PENSIONER who lost her leg when an elderly driver smashed her through a shop window said she believes he should have been jailed.

Retired book-keeper Ruth Kimpton, 78, walked out of the Betfred betting shop in Trelowarren Street, Camborne, on June 17 to find a car reversing towards her.

Shoppers watched in horror as Albert Clark, 76, of Church View Road, Camborne, crashed his Citroën Picasso into her, sending her through the plate-glass window of the shop.

Widow Mrs Kimpton was airlifted to the Royal Cornwall Hospital, Truro, where surgeons amputated her left leg and dealt with severe injuries to her pelvis and right leg.

She then spent 12 days in a coma with her four sons keeping a 24-hour vigil by her bedside at Derriford Hospital, Plymouth.

She was later told she would need further surgery and weeks of rehabilitation.

On Friday at Truro Magistrates' Court, Clark admitted careless driving and was banned for three years and ordered to retake his test.

He was also fined £200 and £80 costs and surcharge. Magistrates said they would leave the issue of compensation to the insurance companies involved.

Speaking at Camborne/Redruth Community Hospital, where she undergoes two hours of daily physiotherapy, Mrs Kimpton, of Camborne, said her injuries had devastated her life.

She said: "I used to enjoy walking and don't want to lose my independence. He (Clark) should have gone to prison. I have got to live with this for the rest of my life. It's so hard, I want my leg back."

She hopes to have a prosthetic leg fitted, to give her greater mobility, and an electric wheelchair.

"I never expected this would happen to me. My sons have been so protective and the hospital staff have been so caring. I am doing lots of exercises but it is tiring," she added.

Magistrates were told Clark had been parking his car when he put it in reverse and it spun out of control.

His solicitor Alex Blair said the Picasso was "a weird, new-fangled" version, which had automatic transmission, a robotised gearbox and an electronic handbrake.

Clark, a former haulage firm owner, told the court that he was unlikely to drive again.

Mr Blair said Clark suffered sleepless nights, was extremely upset and still receiving counselling.

"It is very sad. He has to live with those consequences on a daily basis," said Mr Blair.

Read more from West Briton

Do you have something to say? Leave your comment here...

max 4000 characters


  • iluvkernow  |  September 13 2013, 8:44PM

    Yes this is a very tragic accident and an awful outcome.....but could of been allot worse.... This lady is lucky to be alive!! However making this front page and the way it is portrayed is biased.... The man I'm sure is living with the consequences everyday and will do for the rest of his life. If the driver was under the influence of drugs/alcohol ect.... I would completely agree that a prison sentence is correct, but this is not the case.

    |   4
  • jimjams2011  |  September 13 2013, 4:13PM

    What a spiteful woman. Yes its terrible that you lost your leg, but its not as if he did it on purpose is it? He's an elderly person too.

    |   4
  • Toromocho  |  September 13 2013, 9:33AM

    What was he thinking of? Send the ****** to prison, for careless and stupid. My thoughts are with the poor woman.

    |   -4
  • grahamcoad  |  September 12 2013, 3:01PM

    The law has always been the same, the court has to judge the degree of seriousness of the drivers errors, not the seriousness of any injury that results from it. It is possible for a 'careless driving' to result in a death, yet only a small court sentence. Insurance, and the size of claims is another matter!

    |   4