Pregnant woman, 21, will give birth in jail for crash where she 'tried to beat sat nav'

Victoria Bell
·4-min read
Megan Wagstaff, 21, caused the death of Harry Jenks, 21, when she ploughed her Seat Ibiza into a tree following a night out on March 25 last year. (SWNS)
Megan Wagstaff, 21, caused the death of Harry Jenks, 21, when she ploughed her Seat Ibiza into a tree following a night out in March last year. (SWNS)

A pregnant woman who killed her boyfriend in a crash after boasting she could “beat the sat nav” will give birth in jail after being sentenced to two-and-a-half years.

Megan Wagstaff, 21, caused the death of Harry Jenks, 21, in March last year when she ploughed her Seat Ibiza into a tree following a night out in Atherstone, Warwickshire.

A court heard that the car's sat nav had told her the journey would take 25 minutes and Wagstaff bragged she could “do it in 10”.

But the hairdresser lost control on a double bend and the vehicle smashed into a tree, killing her boyfriend, who was in the back of the car.

Ambulance crews dashed to the scene but were unable to save Jenks, a business management student at Aston University.

The pair were travelling with a third passenger, Poppy Daniels, who suffered a bleed to the brain and was in hospital for a week after the crash.

The court heard that both Jenks and Daniels had asked Wagstaff to slow down prior to the collision.

Wagstaff, of Coldfield, West Midlands, previously denied causing death by dangerous driving after claiming she had only been doing 30mph.

Wagstaff lost control on a double bend and smashed into a tree, killing her boyfriend, right with xxx of two weeks in the back of the car. (SWNS)
Wagstaff (left) lost control on a double bend and smashed into a tree, killing her boyfriend Harry (right, with his mother Dawn), who was in the back of the car. (SWNS)

She later changed her plea to guilty and was jailed and banned from driving for six years and three months at Warwick Crown Court on Friday.

The court heard Wagstaff is pregnant and expecting her first child with her current boyfriend in September.

Sentencing, Anthony Potter told her: “You were overconfident on a road you knew well, and ignored warning you were given.

“On being told how long the sat nav system said it would take for that journey, you made a boast that you would be able to do it in less than half the time.

“I am quite satisfied you took that as something of a challenge, and it led you to drive far too quickly for the road conditions where the road surface was damp.

“It is regrettable that when you were interviewed you did not tell the truth.

"I’m not satisfied you were exceeding the speed limit, but you were doing well in excess of what was appropriate on that road in the circumstances.”

Prosecutor Antonie Muller said Jenks, from Staffordshire, "was 21 years of age when he lost his life in the early hours of 25th of March 2019.

“The car he was a passenger in was being driven by this defendant. It left the road and collided with a tree.”

Harry Jenks with his father Nigel.  (SWNS)
Harry Jenks with his father Nigel. (SWNS)

Muller said Wagstaff was driving on the Coleshill Road at 1:40am with her friend Poppy Daniels in the front and Jenks in the back seat.

The three of them were heading to Coleshill, Warwickshire, and when they got in the car Miss Daniels had asked how long it would take.

The Seat’s sat nav indicated 25 minutes, but Wagstaff boasted that she could do it in 10 minutes.

Muller added: “She certainly drove like that, and was told by both Poppy Daniels and Harry Jenks to slow down.

"She did not, and moments before she lost control, she took her eyes off the road.

“That road is a single lane in either direction, with solid white lines in the centre. It is not a straight road.

"There is a distinct turn in one direction and then in the other, and it was the second turn she failed to take.”

Harry Jenks as a child - dressed up in the nativity at primary school. (SWNS)
Harry Jenks as a child – dressed up in the nativity at primary school. (SWNS)

“She noticed the right-hand bend but was going too fast to negotiate the immediately-following left-hand bend, mounting the kerb and striking a tree in mid-air with the off-side rear of the car.”

Jenks was pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics, while Daniels had a bleed on the brain and other injuries and was in hospital for almost a week.

Jenks’s distraught mother Dawn said in a statement read in court that his death had left her feeling suicidal, and she has to rely on antidepressants and sleeping tablets, adding: “There are no words to describe the pain we are going through.”

Lewis Perry, defending, said: “It is a tragic case, as everyone in court will appreciate, for all those involved – particularly for the deceased’s family, but also for Miss Wagstaff herself."

He said she had suffered significant mental health issues since the incident and had received counselling.

Related: Shamima Begum should be allowed to return to UK, court rules