Man jailed for attempted murder of 'terrified' schoolgirl after he unclipped her seatbelt and crashed car
A chef has been jailed for eight years for the attempted murder of a "terrified" schoolgirl by undoing her seat belt and crashing his car, just hours after he found his wife hanging in their bathroom.
Lukasz Jarosz (35) crashed his Skoda Superb car at a junction of the A36 at Wilton, Wiltshire, on January 6, after he had found his wife, Aneta, dead earlier that afternoon.
The girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons, suffered a fractured leg in the impact and a wound to her head and she had to be freed from the vehicle by firefighters.
The defendant, a Polish national, had also admitted a second charge of causing serious injury through dangerous driving.
Kerry Maylin, prosecuting, told the court that the defendant had become "hysterical" after the "tragedy" of discovering his wife's body.
The court heard that after the crash he was described by witnesses as "distressed, wailing, on his knees in the rain and inconsolable".
Adam Feest QC, defending, said that the case involved "exceptional circumstances" and added: "It's difficult to envisage a case quite so unique and as tragic as this one."
He said that the distress of his client, who has been cared for at Fromeside medium secure mental health hospital in Bristol, "could be taken at face value" and added that his wife's death had "a profound and long-lasting impact" on him.
Sentencing him to serve his jail term in a normal prison, Judge Brian Forster QC at Bournemouth Crown Court told Jarosz that he did not have a mental disorder but was suffering from a "grief reaction and symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder".
He said: "There is no doubt what you did that day will have an impact on her for many years, if not the rest of her life.
"She must have been terrified in that car as she realised what was about to happen."
Judge Forster said that he had prevented the girl from leaving the car and added: "You decided that you should both die and you ignored her plea. It is by chance she is still alive today."
Jarosz, who was also banned from driving for two years after his prison sentence, sobbed as he told the jury during the trial of the moment that he woke up after a nap at his home in Wilton to find his wife hanging in their locked bathroom.
He said: "I saw my wife hanging and I cut her off and I started to cuddle her and was already all bruised. I then put my wife on our bed and I folded her hands, I cuddled her for an awful long time and I cried and I screamed 'Why did you do this, why this?'."
He said that he did not remember the accident or claims that he unclipped the girl's seatbelt shortly before the accident and said that he had not planned his actions.