Doctor walks free after killing biker

Court hears how GP drove wrong way down road

A DOCTOR that drove the wrong way down a dual carriageway, killing a motorcyclist travelling in the right direction, walked free from court today.

Dr Thuli Whitehouse had been found guilty of causing the death of 33-year-old Robert Murrell on the in June last year. However, the judge gave the 27-year-old GP a 51-week prison sentence suspended for two years. Dr. Whitehouse was also banned from driving for four years and must do 150 hours' community service.

The deceased's family issued a statement saying: "We are very upset by the verdict reached today.

"We appreciate no sentence will bring back our son and father, but we feel the sentence is far too lenient and we will be appealing against the sentence."

Judge David Morton Jack was told Whitehouse missed nine separate road markings and signs instructing her to turn left on to a dual carriageway. Whitehouse drove straight across the A420, near Appleton, to reach a gap in the crash barriers to get to the opposite side of the road when she knew she'd made a mistake. Witnesses who saw her at the end of the side road on to the busy road, reverse and then go to the other side of a traffic island.

The jury took less than an hour to find her guilty of causing death by dangerous driving.

Today, Judge Morton Jack paid tribute to Whitehouse and her career as a doctor. "Your character and career are exceptional, indeed golden."