Man guilty of Billingshurst biker’s death

William Ruewell and his sister Eleanor SUS-150622-164309001
William Ruewell and his sister Eleanor SUS-150622-164309001

The parents of a Billingshurst motorcyclist who died on the A29 have thanked Sussex Police after a man was found guilty of causing death by careless driving.

William Ruewell, who would have turned 21 years old this Sunday, was riding a Honda motorcycle when he was involved in a collision with a Volvo hatchback on August 24 2014.

At Chichester Magistrates Court on Friday June 19, Malcolm Griffiths, from Bermuda, was found guilty of causing death by careless driving.

The 69-year-old was fined £5,000 and ordered to pay £1,800 costs, along with a £120 victim surcharge. He was also disqualified from driving for two years and will be required to take an extended driving test, according to Sussex Police.

William, of West Chiltington Lane, was accompanied by his friend, Christopher James, on the day of the accident.

William’s father, Phillip, said: “The judge went out of his way to commend the evidence and character of William’s friend and chief prosecution witness Chris, whose honest account clearly impressed everyone.

“That both Chris and William were absolved of any blame is gratifying for the family.”

Mr Ruewell said that nonetheless William had still died ‘upon the threshold of his life’.

“This coming Saturday would have been his 21st birthday,” he added.

When William was just two years old he was diagnosed with a receptive/expressive disorder on the autistic spectrum, but despite his affliction he grew up to become an avid football player, sailor and motorcyclist.

Instructors at Chichester College have instigated an annual award in his memory, as have Dell Quay Sailing Club, to encourage other children and young people in their attempts to overcome their adversities.

Friends of William organised a charity football match in his memory in October last year.

Mr Ruewell added: “The family would like to thank Sussex Police Accident Investigation Unit for their considerable efforts in this case.

“His tragic passing has affected so many.

“William will be remembered with deep affection by all who knew him.”

Don’t miss out on all the latest breaking news where you live.

Here are four ways you can be sure you’ll be among the first to know what’s going on.

1 Make our website your homepage at www.wscountytimes.co.uk

2 Like our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/wscountytimes

3 Follow us on Twitter @wscountytimes

4 Register with us by clicking on ‘sign in’ (top right corner). You can then receive our daily newsletter AND add your point of view to stories that you read here.

And do share with your family and friends – so they don’t miss out!

The County Times – always the first with your local news.

Be part of it.