The devastated children of a Tameside dad killed in a hit-and-run crash as he walked home from his local pub on Fathers’ Day say no punishment for the driver responsible can ever compensate for their loss.
Dad-of-three David Clegg’s family were speaking after the driver responsible for his death, Scott Freeth, was sentenced to 9 years and 4 months imprisonment after pleading guilty to causing death by dangerous driving and perverting the course of Justice at a hearing at Manchester Crown Court in June.
We are supporting David’s family, including his now 16-year-old daughter, Casey, described the driver’s actions as ‘reckless and selfish’ and said that David’s injuries were so severe that he died at the scene, despite efforts by emergency services to save his life.
Freeth, of Thorncliffe Avenue, Dukinfield, drove his white Mercedes Sprinter van into David Clegg on 19th June 2021, which was Father’s Day, then drove off leaving David lying in the road.
The van was later found abandoned on Park Road in Stalybridge and it took Freeth, along with two friends, almost 24 hours before they finally handed themselves in to police.
Speaking after Freeth’s sentencing, David’s daughter Casey, who was only 14 at the time of the crash, said: “Waking up to be told that my dad had been killed not only devasted me, but ruined my life, my future and my plans. It was completely out of the blue and I didn’t expect it at all. It has impacted my life by not being able to grow up with my dad.
“He won’t see me grow up or be able to see his grandkids and it really upsets me. Father’s Day, Birthdays, Christmases and even New Year’s Eve have completely changed. Father’s Day is the worst of all of them, because I can’t be with him.”
Mark, David’s son, added: “One of the worst things was having to sit with him in a chapel of rest listening to the music we used to listen to together whilst he lies there in a coffin, not moving, literally broken into pieces because of what Scott Freeth did. Knowing there’s nothing I can do and that I’d lost my dad forever. And it now feels like I’ve lost a part of myself. Something I can never change.”
Louise Farrar, Senior Associate Solicitor here at CFG, who is representing the family and attended the sentencing hearing on their behalf, said:
“It’s truly devasting to see what the reckless and selfish actions of Scott Freeth have done to this family. Casey has been left to face life not only without her mum who sadly passed away when she was just 9 years old, but now without her dad too.
“The impact that Freeth’s actions has had is unimaginable, and pleading guilty to the offences is the least he could do, but the sentencing won’t change what’s happened and nothing will ever give the family back what they’ve lost.
“We’ve been helping to support the family to make sure there’s a Guardian in place for Casey so she has the support in place she needs, as well as referring the family to specialist bereavement charities to support them with their loss. We’ll continue looking at how we can help them through this difficult time.”