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CCTV of dealer driving at victim

Dramatic footage has been released by police of a drug dealer's first attempt to run over a man who he then went on to hit with his car and kill.

Jake Austin has been sentenced to life imprisonment, to serve a minimum of 18 years, after being found guilty at Maidstone Crown Court of the murder of John O'Donohue on January 23.

Mr O'Donohue and a friend had arranged to meet 25-year-old Austin, from Gillingham, Kent, and his associate in the evening.

During their meeting, an argument broke out and the four got into a fight, according to Kent Police.

Mr O'Donohue, 33, and his friend tried to walk away when Austin got into his green Ford Mondeo and drove after them.

The CCTV footage captured the moment when Austin drove straight at the pair, in Castlemaine Avenue, Gillingham.

The police spokesman said: "The pair managed to evade him by running up a grass verge.

"Austin then turned the car around and drove at them again, this time crashing through metal railings and running over Mr O'Donohue, who suffered fatal head injuries as a result.

"His friend was unharmed and ran to raise the alarm."

Austin, who called his mother and asked her to report the Mondeo as stolen, went on the run and was arrested four days later in Swindon.

The spokesman said: "He told officers he had not been in the car for weeks but the forensic evidence showing he had been in the car was overwhelming - which included his blood on the driver's airbag. The next day, he was charged with murder."

Detective inspector Ivan Beasley said: "Austin murdered Mr O'Donohue with absolute deliberate actions.

"He was calculating as he drove at speed towards him, not slowing down even when he made contact with his victim and crashed through railings and wall. "

He added: "John O'Donohue was a loving father, partner and son. He has tragically been taken away from his family and friends and our thoughts are with them today."

Mr O'Donohue's family said in a statement: "We as a family know that life will never be the same without John. John's children now have to grow up without their dad.

"When the time is right, however, we will now be able to tell them that justice was finally done."


From Belfast Telegraph