Home   Thanet   News   Article

Van driver Sivananthan Mathivathanan admits driving carelessly before causing death of Valentino and Olivia Coleman

By Paul Hooper

A Thanet van driver has admitted causing the death of a father and daughter by driving carelessly on the A299 last October.

But Sivananthan Mathivathanan denies driving dangerously and will now face a trial later this year.

Valentino Coleman and his daughter Olivia died after they had pulled up behind a stationary Renault Clio on Hengist Way in Minster.

Liv Coleman was killed in the crash alongside her father Valentino
Liv Coleman was killed in the crash alongside her father Valentino

The 49-year-old and 21-year-old had been travelling in a Toyota Aygo when they stopped and tragedy struck.

Mr Coleman, known to most as Tino, was the owner of One Hairdressing in Market Buildings, Maidstone.

Now his family attended Canterbury Crown Court to hear the van driver formally offer his plea to not guilty to causing their deaths by driving dangerously.

Mathivathanan, 44, of Grange Road Broadstairs said he was prepared to plea to the lesser careless driving charge.

Judge Rupert Lowe was told that the CPS did not accept the plea to the more serious offence and a three- day trial will now take place on November 19.

Mr Coleman was also killed in the crash
Mr Coleman was also killed in the crash

After the 15-minute hearing, in which Mathivathanan was given bail, the judge praised Mr Coleman’s family and friends for attending and behaving in “such a dignified way.”

After father and daughter' deaths, close friend Steven Betts, who runs Stainless Steve's Tattoo Shop, said:"He was such a great guy and a good friend who will be sadly missed. He always had time for everybody."

Another neighbour, Diane Potter said: “They were a really lovely family, we used to call them the ideal family as they had such beautiful daughters.

"I found out from a friend as we were all members of the Woodlands school Facebook group.

"I was friends with him on Facebook too. It is very sad."

Join the debate...
Comments |

Don't have an account? Please Register first!

The KM Group does not moderate comments. Please click here for our house rules.

People who post abusive comments about other users or those featured in articles will be banned.

Thank you. Your comment has been received and will appear on the site shortly.


Terms of Comments
We do not actively moderate, monitor or edit contributions to the reader comments but we may intervene and take such action as we think necessary, please click here for our house rules. If you have any concerns over the contents on our site, please either register those concerns using the report abuse button, contact us here, email multimediadesk@thekmgroup.co.uk or call 01634 227989.

Follow us

Like Us on Facebook

Most popular

Kent Travel News

Close This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.Learn More