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Jailed: ‘Violent’ joyrider who killed two friends in 100mph police chase

Jailed: Karl Maddix Jailed: Karl Maddix

Thursday, March 6, 2014
6:21 PM

A “violent criminal” who fled police in a 100mph car chase while high on drugs then crashed, killing two of his best friends, was handed a 10-year jail sentence today.

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"People who know you know something other than the selfish, violent criminal you have shown yourself to be. Only you know if that’s true."

Judge James Patrick

Karl Maddix, 32, of Tufnell Park Road, Holloway, is said to have run four red lights during the high-speed pursuit in his girlfriend’s Audi A3 before hitting a delivery van and a bridge support in Tottenham.

His two “brothers” in the car - Shaka Henry, 33, from St John’s Way, Archway, and Gregory Jones, 38, of Grenville Road, Hornsey Rise - both died at the scene.

Mr Jones died from multiple head trauma while Mr Henry died from multiple chest and head tramua - thought to have been caused by a saw in the boot of the car flying forward.

Wood Green Crown Court heard that after the crash, Maddix tried to restart the car then fought police officers in a bid to escape.

Workers clear the scene of the police chase death crash in Tottenham. Picture: Stefan Rousseau/PA WireWorkers clear the scene of the police chase death crash in Tottenham. Picture: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

Maddix was uninsured and without a licence and his passengers were wanted on suspicion of other offences – they had aroused the suspicion of police patrolling Highbury and Islington, in the early hours of March 29 last year.

They were then spotted at the junction of Hornsey Road and Seven Sisters Road, Holloway. When a police car approached them they crept through a red light before accelerating “extremely fast” down Seven Sisters Road, pursued by police, the court heard.

As they sped past Finsbury Park station, Maddix was seen “driving erratically” and “weaving in and out of traffic”.

A speed camera at the junction with Amhurst Park clocked them at 57mph after braking heavily, while experts estimated their average speed as 83mph, possibly in the region of 100mph at times.

Maddix flew through two more red lights along Seven Sisters Road before hitting a van whilst trying to jump a fourth at the junction with St Ann’s Road, Tottenham. The collision caused the Audi to skid into a brick bridge support, killing the two passengers.

Passing sentence, Judge James Patrick said: “It’s hard to imagine a worse case than this.”

He added: “You had taken your girlfriend’s car without her consent, you had taken cocaine and had two more wraps on you. It’s a miracle more people were not killed or maimed.

“Despite your injuries to you and you passengers you were concerned only for yourself. You tried to restart the Audi and police had to strike you to make you give up the keys.

“Even then you tried to escape, running into a police officer you thought was trying to fight you.

“You lifted the body weight of several officers and they punched and kneed you several times to try to calm you down.

“Even in the hospital you would not give officers the names of the two passengers. Your defence says it’s understandable, I say it’s reprehensible.”

Maddix has never held a driving licence but has previous convictions for driving and drugs offences, as well as assualting a fellow prisoner in prison.

He sent flowers to his two victims’ funerals and had letters read out at the service, the court heard.

Judge Patrick added: “Nothing I can say or sentence I can pass will alleviate the feeling of loss and desperation endured by their family and friends. You are indeed fortunate they are as concerned about you as they are.”

The defendant, who pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving, was visibly upset as he was sentenced to 10 years behind bars. He was also was disqualified from driving for 12 years.

Judge Patrick said: “People who know you know something other than the selfish, violent criminal you have shown yourself to be. Only you know if that’s true.”

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