In February, 22-year-old Paige Jackson and her unborn son, who she already named Reuben, died after being hit by a drunk and drugged driver.
Jackson was walking to work when Floyd Mangove hit her, throwing her into the air at more than 70mph. She died instantly and despite doctors carrying out an emergency caesarean, her unborn son died as well. Prior to her death, Jackson was seven-months pregnant and she and her fiancé, Kane Johnson, were thrilled about their next season of life together as parents.
Now Mangove has been sentenced to seven-and-a-half years in prison. According to the Daily Mail, at the time of the accident he had 142 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millers of blood. In the United Kingdom, the legal limit is 80 micrograms and he was driving 70-88 mph in a 30 mph zone. He was also smoking cannabis. The judge who sentenced him, Nicholas Dean QC said, “You were responsible for those deaths by the way you drove your car. I’m treating it as the death of more than one person.”
The prosecutor, Martin Hurst, said that Jackson was hit from the behind and had fatal injuries on her head and abdomen. When Mangove crashed, his wheels locked and he mounted the pavement. He also demolished a road sign with two upright posts which acted as a ramp, causing the car to take off and rotate 360 degrees, landing on its wheels.
Mangove admitted to the accident and didn’t flee from the scene, which is why he didn’t have to go to trial and escaped a longer prison sentence. However, Jackson’s family wasn’t moved by his confession. Johnson said that his punishment would never make up for the ‘life sentence of grief’ they had been left with. He said, “What he has done has devastated so many lives, not just the two that were lost. Paige was the most beautiful and kind woman – she was loved by everyone.”
At the time of the accident Jackson was working at McDonald’s to make extra money before her baby arrived. Her mother, Vanessa Freeman, commented on her grandson’s death. She said, “My grandson never even had a chance of life. The baby would have been loved so dearly by all the family.
In the United States, we have laws that make it a crime to harm an embryo or fetus at any stage of pregnancy during an assault on a pregnant woman. In April 2004, George W. Bush signed into law The Unborn Victims of Violence Act and 31 states have similar laws in place. The 2004 bill states “Whoever engages in conduct that violates any of the provisions of law… and thereby causes the death of, or bodily injury to, a child, who is in utero at the time the conduct takes place, is guilty of a separate offense under this section.”