Dr Darran Venn, 37, was killed by the career criminal driving at a 'ridiculous speed' The widow of a doctor killed in a crash caused by a caree
Dr Darran Venn, 37, was killed by the career criminal driving at a ‘ridiculous speed’
The widow of a doctor killed in a crash caused by a career criminal driving at a ‘ridiculous speed’ has told of her grief at the couple’s two girls losing their father.
Dr Darran Venn’s life was ended ‘in a second’ by John Darch, 25, who was overtaking several vehicles when he smashed head-on into the victim’s car near Weymouth in Dorset.
Darch had been tailgating other drivers at speeds of up to 70mph in his BMW moments before the horrific collision.
Dr Venn, 37, a keen rugby and squash player, was heading to work at the time and had planned to bake a birthday cake for one of his young daughters when he returned home that evening.
Darch, who has served time in prison for robbery and drug dealing, was jailed for seven years after he was found guilty of causing death by dangerous driving.
At the sentencing hearing, Dr Venn’s wife Anna, 35, described the devastation his death had had on her and their two daughters, who are now aged seven and five.
Dr Venn’s wife Anna (pictured), 35, described the devastation her husband’s death had had on her and their two daughters, who are now aged seven and five
Mrs Venn, from Portishead, Somerset, said her husband was ‘utterly besotted’ with his children. She said: ‘Darran was a truly remarkable father.
‘His face lit up when he talked about his girls. Losing Darran has had a catastrophic impact on our lives. I became a widow at 34. His daughters were four and five.
‘The girls will lose out the most. He played by the rules his whole life, all that hard work and effort taken away in a second.’
John Darch was overtaking several vehicles when he smashed into the victim’s car
Dr Venn worked as a systems engineer in Weymouth and was six minutes from his office when the collision happened on the B3157 on May 17, 2017.
Other drivers said Darch was driving ‘like an idiot’ at the time. He had been pushing other motorists to go faster by tailgating them and had overtaken a line of three cars.
Charles Gabb, prosecuting, told Bournemouth Crown Court the crash happened on Dr Venn’s side of the road and the impact ripped the engine out of the BMW.
Mr Gabb said: ‘How much force does it take to rip an engine out of a BMW? He was going ridiculously fast.’
Dr Venn died at the scene of the crash. Anne Brown, defending, asked the sentencing judge to take Darch’s age into consideration.
She said: ‘He was 23 years of age when this occurred. It’s recognised that (people’s) maturity and consequential thinking skills are not developed until their mid-20s.’
Judge Brian Forster said that no sentence he could impose would reflect the loss of life and Dr Venn was ‘beyond value’.
The crash happened on this section of the B3157 near Weymouth in Dorset on May 17, 2017
Speaking to Darch, he said: ‘In my judgement you drove aggressively, overtaking other traffic when it was dangerous to do so.
‘You pushed other motorists by driving too close and you drove at a far too high speed for the conditions.
Statement from Darran Venn’s wife Anna
‘Darran was a truly remarkable father. His face lit up when he talked about his girls.
‘Losing Darran has had a catastrophic impact on our lives. I became a widow at 34. His daughters were four and five. The girls will lose out the most.
‘He played by the rules his whole life, all that hard work and effort taken away in a second.’
‘The dangerousness of your driving is underlined by the fact that you lost control on a straight stretch of road. The impact of what you did has been enormous.’
Darch was sentenced to seven years in jail and banned from driving for eight and a half years.
In a post on a JustGiving page to raise money for road safety charity Brake, Dr Venn’s older brother Marcus said: ‘My brother didn’t stand a chance.
‘A dedicated and loving family man, he leaves behind two young daughters. He was an active person with a passion for squash representing numerous clubs, playing rugby and a love of cycling.
‘We never believed that time with him would be cut so short and for such an unfair reason. He will be greatly missed by all his family, friends and colleagues.’