Daniel Cobbold was sentenced at Maidstone Crown Court
by Keith Hunt
A young driver who left a teenager with severe leg injuries after crashing into his motorcycle has been locked up for eight months.
Joe Carney's leg was trapped in his Suzuki 50cc motorbike when Daniel Cobbold crashed into him in Barnsole Road, Gillingham.
Joe, then 16, had to have bone grafts and now has one leg 2in shorter than the other. He was confined to a wheelchair at first and had to delay taking his GCSE exams for a year.
Cobbold, 19, of Illustrious Close, Chatham, admitted dangerous driving. He was disqualified for two years.
Maidstone Crown Court heard Cobbold was out on the evening of April 25 helping a friend look for a motorcycle that had been taken.
James Cartwright, prosecuting, said the victim was riding along the residential street at about 30mph when the VW Golf swerved into him, throwing him into the road.
One of the car passengers told a resident they thought the motorcycle was the one they were looking for and were trying to stop it.
Mr Cartwright said Cobbold made "a tremendous error of judgement" and crashed into the motorbike.
"This boy is clearly feeling bitter," he said. "He has a shortened leg. He has had bone grafts and so forth. He thinks his personal relationships are likely to be soured. People remark on his leg in an unpleasant way."
Kate Wilkinson, defending, said it was not a case of road rage and neither drugs nor alcohol were involved.
"It was a momentary decision to cross the white line for a closer view," she said.
Cobbold had lost his job and his car and had been living in fear of going into custody.
"He comes from a respectable family and has real employment prospects," said Miss Wilkinson. "He has made a terrible mistake."
Judge Michael Carroll told Cobbold: "This is the first time you have committed a criminal offence and probably the last. This was a bad piece of driving. It was reckless in the extreme.
"It was deliberate and has had a devastating effect on the victim. He faces the rest of his life with this disability. The sentence here was always going to be custodial."