Family of pregnant couple mowed down by teenager high on drugs speak out


Family of pregnant couple mowed down by teenager high on drugs break down as they detail how the crash has torn their lives apart: ‘The happy times are gone forever’

  • Matthew Field and Kate Leadbetter were hit by a drug driver in a 4WD in 2021 
  • The couple were six months pregnant and had been out walking their dogs 
  • Teenage driver will be sentenced on Queensland Supreme Court on Wednesday  

The family of a pregnant couple who died after being mowed down by a teenager high on drugs and alcohol have spoken of their pain. 

Matthew Field, 37, and Kate Leadbetter, 31, who was six months’ pregnant, were walking their dogs in Alexandra Hills, southeast of Brisbane on Australia Day in 2021 when they were struck.

The now 18-year-old driver, who cannot be named because he was a minor, had stolen a white Landcruiser four-wheel-drive and ran a red light before he hit a tow truck, rolled and ploughed into the couple. 

He subsequently tried to flee the scene but was tackled by a bystander and detained until police arrived. 

The family of a young pregnant couple (pictured) have spoken of their pain after they were killed by a drug driver

The family of a young pregnant couple (pictured) have spoken of their pain after they were killed by a drug driver 

Kate Leadbetter, 31, (right) and Matt Field, 37, (left) were walking their dogs in Alexandra Hills, southeast of Brisbane

Kate Leadbetter, 31, (right) and Matt Field, 37, (left) were walking their dogs in Alexandra Hills, southeast of Brisbane 

Police had originally levelled two counts of murder at the teenager and were considering a third for the couple’s unborn son Miles. 

Queensland’s Supreme Court on Tuesday was told, however, that the driver had pleaded guilty to two counts of manslaughter earlier this year. 

Ms Leadbetter and Mr Field’s families were in court and read heartbreaking victim impact statements detailing how the tragedy has affected every part of their lives. 

Jeannie Thorne, Ms Leadbetter mother, said she felt lost without her daughter. 

‘I should be in my other life, the one that’s been ripped away, the life of a mother and a grandmother, I should be holding her baby boy,’ Ms Thorne said, reports the ABC

John Leadbetter said he would never properly move on and would swap places with his daughter in a heartbeat. 

The stolen car the teenager was driving while high on drugs after he hit a tow truck and ploughed into the couple (pictured)

The stolen car the teenager was driving while high on drugs after he hit a tow truck and ploughed into the couple (pictured) 

Mr Field’s father Russel said he felt ‘the happy times are gone forever’ as he struggled to even enjoy memories of his son.

He also told the teenager, who was in court as the statements were read, that he showed a ‘disregard for life’ and that fleeing the scene was the ‘lowest of low’ acts. 

Ann Field said her son and Ms Leadbetter were extremely happy and that she now felt paralysed. 

‘They had a beautiful life together and they were bringing a beautiful life into this world,’ Mrs Field said. 

Ms Leadbetter and Mr Field were six months pregnant with their first child Miles (pictured)

Ms Leadbetter and Mr Field were six months pregnant with their first child Miles (pictured) 

In addition to the two manslaughter charges, the teen also pleaded guilty to a raft of other charges including unlawful use of a motor vehicle, dangerous driving while under the influence and driving unlicensed. 

The stolen car was seen swerving close to and even bumping other cross, crossing the median strip and travelling at more than 100km/h in a 50km/h zone. 

The driver will be sentenced on Wednesday. 

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