Perth driver jailed after drug crash while speeding killed his partner

Drug driver speeding 42km/h over the limit who lost control of his aunt’s Hyundai Accent in a horror crash that killed the mother of his child is sentenced to just FOUR YEARS in jail

  • Grantley Penny, 31, was driving at 112 km/h at the time of the crash last year
  • His partner Darryleen Koolmatrie, 23, was killed three weeks after giving birth  
  • Penny was sentenced to four years with a minimum of two years before parole

A drug driver who killed his partner after losing control while speeding more than 40km/h over the limit has been jailed for four years.

Grantley Dean Penny, 31, was driving his aunt’s Hyundai Accent on September 1 last year when he lost control of the car and smashed into a power pole in Lesmurdie, Perth

His partner Darryleen Koolmatrie, 23, was killed in the crash just three weeks after she gave birth to their baby boy, named Grantley after his father.   

She was rushed to hospital before being declared dead, while Penny only received minor injuries.

Penny was sentenced to four years in jail and must serve a minimum of two years before being eligible for parole. He has also been disqualified from driving for four years.

Grantley Dean Penny, 31, was driving his aunt's Hyundai Accent on September 1 last year when he crashed

Grantley Dean Penny, 31, was driving his aunt’s Hyundai Accent on September 1 last year when he crashed

His partner Darryleen Koolmatrie, 23, was killed in the crash, just three weeks after she gave birth to their baby boy

His partner Darryleen Koolmatrie, 23, was killed in the crash, just three weeks after she gave birth to their baby boy

Penny was driving 112 km/h in a 70 km/h zone at 11.20am on the morning of the crash and lost control of the car.

It slid sideways for about 50 metres before crashing into a concrete median strip and flying through the air. 

The passenger side then smashed into the wooden pole, snapping it in half. 

It had been raining before the crash and it was later revealed the car’s  left front and right rear tyres were below the minimum safe tread depth. 

Penny told court he did not know about the condition of the tyres until the crash.

His licence had also been expired for four years at the time of the crash and tests revealed he had been driving with a combination of prescription medications and cannabis in his system.

‘I remember coming round the corner and it just slid out, just slid out, you know? The tyres were bald and I couldn’t bring it back,’ Penny told police after the crash, according to WA Today

His lawyer Patti Chong said the crash was ‘a tragedy of Shakespearean proportions’.

‘The offender did not just kill any innocent bystander or victim, he killed the love of his life, the mother of his three-month-old son,’ she said.

His licence had been expired for four years at the time of the crash and tests revealed he had been driving with a combination of prescription medications and cannabis in his system

His licence had been expired for four years at the time of the crash and tests revealed he had been driving with a combination of prescription medications and cannabis in his system

Penny was driving 112 km/h in a 70 km/h zone at 11.20am on the morning of the crash and lost control of the car

Penny was driving 112 km/h in a 70 km/h zone at 11.20am on the morning of the crash and lost control of the car

‘It was reckless of him to drive when his motor driver’s licence was suspended. It was reckless of him to get into a car that was less than roadworthy, with the tyres below the legal tread limit.

‘It was reckless of him to be travelling at the speed which he did, down a steep hill in wet weather conditions. It was a tragedy just waiting to happen and it did happen.’ 

She also told the court the strip of road where Penny had crashed had seen 25 other accidents that year, and road safety in the area was incredibly poor.

Judge Charlotte Wallace said Penny was ‘genuinely remorseful and consumed by your own grief’ and had displayed empathy for the victim’s family.

‘Your driving had devastating consequences. You took a human life,’ she said.

‘I accept that it was never your intention, of course, to kill, or even harm your partner by driving in the manner in which you did.

‘However, this is inevitably the case when someone is convicted of this kind of offence.’

Reacting, Joyleen Koolmatrie described her granddaughter as ‘a compassionate young woman’, while her father John Blurton said his life was ’empty and lonely’ without his daughter.

While outside court, he labelled the sentence ‘disgusting’.

‘He only got two years (before parole). I’ve got a lifetime, his son has a lifetime,’ he said.

Blurton said he had reunited with his daughter after 20 years, and was ‘really happy’.

‘Then all of a sudden, three years later she was taken away,’ he said.

Source

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