Jury unable to reach verdict in fatal crash case

Mohmed Salman Patel will face a retrial later in 2018
Mohmed Salman Patel will face a retrial later in 2018
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A man accused of causing the death of two women in Preston by dangerous driving faces a retrial later this year.

Jurors deliberating on the case of Mohmed Salman Patel were discharged on Monday after indicating they had been unable to reach a verdict.

The 27-year-old, of Carham Road, Blackburn, will return to court on July 30 for another trial.

He had pleaded not guilty to causing the deaths of Rachel Murphy, 23, and Shelby Maher, 17, by dangerous driving but had admitted a lesser charge of causing death by careless driving in both cases.

Earlier jurors had been instructed by Judge Robert Altham that he would accept majority verdicts.

However, several hours later and after six hours of deliberation in total, the jury returned to the court to declare there was no reasonable prospect of them being able to reach a verdict if given more time.

Miss Murphy and Miss Maher, both from Preston, died having sustained catastrophic injuries in the collision on Brockholes Brow in April 2016.

Megan Blakey, who was 15 at the time, was also injured after being struck by the BMW and spent a week in hospital.

Two boys, who had crossed the road moments before, escaped unhurt.

Patel was granted unconditional bail until the new proceedings, in front of a fresh jury, at the city’s crown court.