Footage of the harrowing moment a drug-fueled driver lost control of his car and killed a father-of-two has been released by his grieving partner in a bid ‘to stop others making the same mistake’.
Richie Jordan, 33, was a passenger in the Mercedes that was being driven by work colleague Mark Thompson.
The car flipped and overturned on the A19, near Sunderland, after reaching speeds of more than 120mph in the accident on August 4, 2019.
Thompson was found to be over the limit for both drink and drugs and was jailed for nearly seven years after pleading guilty to causing death by dangerous driving on August 31, 2019.
Now, Mr Jordan’s partner, Carol King, has asked for the dashcam footage of the collision to be made public – in the hope that others will think again before getting behind the wheel while under the influence.
The 30-year-old said: ‘I used to be the person who read about these tragic incidents.
‘Then it happened to my family.
‘People don’t realise at the time when under the influence of drink or drugs, all inhibitions and common sense go out of the window.
Pictured: 33-year-old Richie Jordan with his eldest daughter Quinn, four. Weeks after losing her partner, Ms King discovered she was pregnant with Mr Jordan’s second child Gray, who is now aged two
Non-league footballer Mr Jordan was a back seat passenger in the car, which crashed near Houghton-le-Spring in August 2019
‘Other road users, pedestrians, even your own passengers’ safety and your own doesn’t register and isn’t called in to question, the recklessness completely spirals.
‘Before Richie passed I probably wouldn’t challenge somebody who had been drinking but you see it all the time, people pushing the boundaries.
”I’ll just have a couple,” “it’s only down the road,” “I’ll be fine, it will only take five minutes.”
‘Now I wouldn’t think twice about challenging someone I knew who’s over the limit.
‘On the night Richie died that was precisely what happened.
‘A number of decisions were made without thinking or being challenged.
‘It has destroyed the lives of so many people. One moment – getting behind the wheel under the influence of drink and drugs – and for what?’
Shocking: The Mercedes can be speeding past on the A19, near Sunderland, after reaching speeds of over 120mph
Work colleague Mark Thompson was driving under the influence of drink and drugs and was later jailed
Mr Jordan’s wife has released the footage in the hope to make others think before they get behind the wheel
Non-league footballer Mr Jordan was a back seat passenger in the car, which crashed near Houghton-le-Spring in August 2019.
Lewis Atkinson, who had been in the front seat, suffered a brain bleed.
Just weeks after losing her partner, Ms King, from Sunderland, discovered she was pregnant with Mr Jordan’s second child.
Ms King now has two young girls that will grow up without their dad.
‘I’ve now got two young daughters, Quinn is four and Gray is two, who are yet to fully comprehend their loss and the enormity of what’s happened,’ she said.
‘The ripple effect of that night passed on to two young children to carry the burden of before their lives have even begun.’
Pictured: Mark Thompson was jailed for six years and eight months after pleading guilty to causing death by dangerous driving
Thompson, of Seaton Crescent, Seaham, County Durham, pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving and causing serious injury by dangerous driving.
The 42-year-old was locked up for six years and eight months and banned from the roads for three years, starting on his release from jail.
Now, Ms King has asked Northumbria Police to release the footage to support a the national drink and drug driving awareness campaign that will run for the next fortnight.
Officers from Northumbria Police’s Operation Dragoon team will be carrying out enforcement on the roads as well as educating drivers about the consequences of driving with drink or drugs in their system.
Ms King added: ‘Campaigns like this are so important and that’s why we wanted to release the footage now and hopefully stop others from making the same mistakes that were made that night.
‘In the years since Richie’s death, we’ve all been trying to make sense of it – it must have been for something. There must be a positive or a lesson we can take from it.
‘So when you see someone who is considering jumping in the car under the influence, think of Richie. Think of my girls and remember the story you’re reading now – a story similar to ones I once read could be your own reality, as it is for me now.’
The National Police Chiefs’ Council’s Drink and Drug Driving campaign will run until August 28 – Officers from Northumbria will be carrying out enforcement on the roads and educating drivers about the consequences of driving with drink or drugs in their system
Sergeant Glen Robson, of Northumbria Police’s Operation Dragoon team said: ‘By making the decision to get behind the wheel, you are rolling the dice with people’s lives.
‘As this awful case shows, it can have irreversible consequences and ruin more than one life in an instant.
‘This footage showing the moment before Richie’s death is hard-hitting and harrowing.
‘We’re releasing it for a reason – to try and help get the message through to people.
‘We all have a responsibility to help make our roads as safe as they possibly can be for all road users. Anyone who flouts the law and gambles with other people’s lives will be dealt with robustly.’
The National Police Chiefs’ Council’s Drink and Drug Driving campaign will run until August 28.