Kings Langley woman jailed after pleading guilty to causing horror crash which killed her best friend in Hemel

The 26-year-old also lost her baby as a result of the collision - and has been registered disabled after suffering ligament and muscle damage

Friday, 21st May 2021, 2:12 pm
Updated Friday, 21st May 2021, 2:14 pm

A woman has been sentenced to two years and four months in prison for causing the death of her friend in a road traffic collision in Hemel Hempstead.

Emma-Louise Robinson, 26, of Toms Lane, Kings Langley, appeared at St Albans Crown Court yesterday (Thursday, May 20) where she pleaded guilty to one count of causing death by dangerous driving.

Robinson was 20 weeks pregnant at the time of the collision, but sadly lost the baby as a result. She also suffered ligament and muscle damage in the collision and has since been registered disabled.

Emma-Louise Robinson pleaded guilty to one count of causing death by dangerous driving
Emma-Louise Robinson pleaded guilty to one count of causing death by dangerous driving

The court heard how on the afternoon Tuesday, August 25, last year, Emma-Louise collected her friend Gracie Estep, also aged 26, from her home in Hemel Hempstead with the intention of collecting a takeaway.

Robinson was driving her white Fiat 500 when she began tailgating a Toyota travelling in the right-hand lane as they descended St Albans Road – a dual carriageway – towards the Plough Roundabout, known locally as the Magic Roundabout.

Witnesses described the Fiat as being driven erratically and aggressively, and they believed it was a road rage incident.

They told officers it initially attempted a dangerous undertake manoeuvre but was unsuccessful due to the proximity of other vehicles.

Gracie Estep died at the scene of the collision.

Robinson then completed a second undertake manoeuvre, travelling across into the left-hand lane and pulling back into the right-hand lane, in front of the Toyota, leaving an unsuitable gap between the two vehicles.

The Fiat was then seen to ‘brake test’ the Toyota, the driver of which tried to take evasive action to avoid a collision.

However the vehicles were too close together and the front of the Toyota hit the rear of the Fiat, which then crossed the central reservation.

The Fiat collided with a BMW travelling in the opposite direction before overturning and coming to rest on the verge.

Sadly, Gracie – a mother of two young children – suffered serious injuries and tragically died at the scene.

Robinson was also injured and airlifted to hospital for treatment.

The drivers of the Toyota and BMW, both men, were also injured in the collision and required hospital treatment.

Detective Constable Helen Giles, from the Serious Collision Investigation Unit, said: “My thoughts are first and foremost with Gracie’s family as they continue to try and process an unimaginable loss.

“This was a devastating collision which claimed the life of an innocent woman, leaving her two young children to grow up without a mother, and all because the defendant could not control her anger behind the wheel.

“Robinson’s actions not only caused the death of her friend but also that of her own unborn child, which is hugely distressing and something she will now have to live with for the rest of her life.

“The drivers of the two other vehicles involved also suffered painful injuries and their mental health has been affected as a result of the terrible events on that day, which were not their fault in any way.

“This case shows how fragile life is and how a moment of anger can have irreversible and far-reaching implications.

"I hope Gracie’s family can find some closure following the conclusion of the court case, but we know that nothing will ever bring her back.”

Robinson has been banned from driving for three years and two months, and will have to take an extended re-test if she applies for a driving licence in the future.