Published: 12:45, 19 September 2017 |
Updated: 10:52, 20 September 2017
A man accused of killing a cyclist in a crash is alleged to have been under the influence of drink and drugs.
Joseph Bills, 22, has been charged with five offences following the death of popular chef Dave Thorman in Whitstable on March 10.
Mr Thorman suffered serious injuries when he collided with a Vauxhall Vivaro van travelling in the opposite direction in Canterbury Road.
He had been cycling home from work to Tankerton Road when he was fatally injured near the junction with Saddleton Road at about 8.30pm.
Bills, of South Street, Whitstable, was arrested at the scene at 9.50pm and released on bail.
He has now been charged with causing death by dangerous driving and while over the drink drive and specified drug limits.
He also accused of dangerous driving and failing to stop at the scene of the collision.
Mr Thorman, 35, had been travelling home from the Crescent Turner Hotel in Wraik Hill, Whitstable, at the time of the crash.
His death devastated his family and friends, who described him as a “unique free spirit with a gentle soul”.
His mum, Jill, 57, was given the heartbreaking news of her son’s death when police visited her home in Hawkinge at 5.30am the following morning.
“They asked to come in and said Dave had been fatally injured,” she said.
“As soon as they said the word fatal my heart just sank. We’ve been in shock ever since.”
Mr Thorman had been head chef for two years at the Crescent Turner, which held a wake following a celebration of his life at the town's Riverside Church.
His dad, Terry, said at the service: “Dave was one of those people you just immediately felt comfortable in his presence. He was gregarious.
“He was kindness personified. An all-round great young man.”
Bills has been bailed to appear at Margate Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday, September 26.
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