Tuesday 16 January 2018

Van driver who mowed down mum of three in hit and run 'wanted to kill more', court told

Antony Stone

A VAN driver who mowed down and killed a mother of three in a hit-and-run rampage intended to kill many more, a court heard today.

Matthew Tvrdon, 31, avoided running down children but meant to kill at least one adult in every group he targeted.

Karina Menzies, 32, died in the devastation wrought by Tvrdon in Cardiff in October.

At the wheel of a three-tonne Iveco van, he purposely mounted kerbs and targeted five groups of parents with children.

He appeared at Cardiff Crown Court on videolink today where a series of previous guilty pleas were accepted.

The prosecution accepts he was suffering from paranoid schizophrenia at the time of the rampage.

It accepted a plea of manslaughter with diminished responsibility from Tvrdon in relation to Ms Menzies' death after he denied murder.

Ian Murphy QC, prosecuting, said it was accepted Tvrdon was "suffering from an abnormality of mental function" which substantially impaired his ability for rational judgement.

Tvrdon admitted two further offences at the start of proceedings today.

In total he pleaded guilty to seven counts of attempted murder, two of causing grievous bodily harm (GBH) and two of attempted GBH.

He admitted five counts of actual bodily harm, with one new admission today, one new count of common assault and causing death by dangerous driving.

Mr Murphy said Tvrdon began the mayhem in a black Renault Clio.

He sped through red lights, drove at speed into oncoming traffic and mounted grass verges.

He then drove into the car park of the West End Social Club in Cowbridge Road West and switched to his Iveco van.

Press Association

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