Justice for Lauren - CPS Judicial Review

by David Johnson

Justice for Lauren - CPS Judicial Review

by David Johnson
David Johnson
My wife was killed by a driver who mounted the pavement at between 53mph & 55mph, in a 20mph zone. I want accountability, and disclosure of key documents supporting the CPS' decision not to prosecute.
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David Johnson
My wife was killed by a driver who mounted the pavement at between 53mph & 55mph, in a 20mph zone. I want accountability, and disclosure of key documents supporting the CPS' decision not to prosecute.
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Latest: Nov. 2, 2018

Justice for Lauren - Campaign Response

Dear All,

Two weeks into the launch of our Crowd-Justice page and, more importantly, since we decided to open up about the position and emotional strain the CPS have placed upon our family, we have:...

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What do I want?

On 28 October 2016, a driver who claims to have no recollection of events killed Lauren Johnson - my wife, and the mother of our two children. In an instant, our lives were ripped apart, and our children forced to live the rest of their lives without having their beautiful mummy by their side to watch and enjoy them growing up.

I want the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to fully disclose information that they state supports a decision not to prosecute the driver who killed Lauren. Lauren’s family and I have raised questions with the CPS and the Police, of which many remain unanswered. The driver has not been charged with any offence.

I am unable to see at this point that Lauren or our family has been considered throughout this process. We have been provided with pieces of information that have introduced further ambiguity around the collision that killed Lauren. We are yet to see any clear evidence that suggests the driver was not in control of the vehicle that killed her.

Above all, I want accountability and justice for Lauren and our children, and I want justice to be seen to be done. Lauren has been killed and cannot seek justice and so it is the responsibility of the living, her family, to seek justice on her behalf and for our children.


Who am I?

My name is David Johnson. I am the husband of Lauren Johnson and the father of Cara and Daniel. Through no fault of their own, our children have had their mother taken from them. Throughout the investigation of Lauren’s death, we have not been treated with dignity or been provided with a sufficient level of information that will allow me one day to try and explain to our children what actually happened on that day.

At the time Lauren was killed our children were only 8 months old and 2 years respectively. My wife was enjoying her maternity leave and was on her way to the gym. She died that day at only 33 years of age. We were informed by the doctors in the hospital that my wife of 4 years and partner of 13 years, had died as a result of the injuries sustained in the collision. All of Lauren’s family, including her parents, have been left devastated by her death.

 

What happened

On 28 October 2016, a driver who claims to have no recollection of events, killed my beautiful wife and the mother of our two children. Lauren was enjoying life, and was due to return to work following maternity leave. Lauren’s mother was at home watching our son. Our daughter was in nursery and I was saying my farewells, on my last day in work. Life was good. Moments after leaving our family home, Lauren’s life was taken by a driver who mounted the pavement and was doing speeds of between 53mph and 55mph in a 20mph zone. That very morning we were planning our future and never for one moment considered that our lives would be ripped apart, only hours later. Our children had no idea they would never see their mummy again.

Despite it being clear that the driver was solely responsible for my wife’s tragic death, the CPS told us that they would not prosecute him for this offence.  It took the CPS thirteen months to deliver this decision. Throughout that time we had asked for clarity around the ongoing investigation, but were not and still have not been provided any clear evidence that suggests the driver was not in control.

The CPS has stated that it is not in the public interest to prosecute. I truly believe it is in the public interest to be allowed to understand why my wife was killed that day, and to understand fully why nobody Is being made accountable.


The case

I have brought an important judicial review case in the High Court. The CPS’ decision is controversial. They have left a number of questions unanswered, and a grieving family completely at a loss. The CPS have refused to disclose key documents.  This information would allow us to form a view on the merits of the case. We have been shocked at the lack of transparency and sensitivity of the CPS. We now realise how difficult and expensive the CPS can make it for families to simply get answers and information that they surely deserve. By fully disclosing the documents that the CPS refer to, they have the ability to help a grieving family fully understand the reasons for choosing not to prosecute the individual that killed my wife.

It is my firm belief that a jury and court should decide whether the driver is guilty or has a defence to their actions. Especially in cases where the CPS are unable or unwilling to fully disclose the information that forms the basis of their decision. This would ensure a transparent and balanced approach, and ensure that correct questions are asked of individuals and specialists.

Our case can potentially help many other people, by requesting that the CPS are transparent with their actions and decisions.


Help us to raise 

We have submitted requests to the courts for disclosure of key documents and an application for a judicial review of the CPS process. In addition to what has been spent previously, our legal fees for this stage are likely to be in excess of £30k.

Our initial target is to raise £15k, and if we can get close to that may introduce a stretch target that will take us closer to the full legal expense.

Whilst we are making a heartfelt plea for your support, we acknowledge that this does not always have to come in a financial manner. But, I would ask that if this resonates with you in any way and you agree that justice is not currently being served that you at least help us by sharing this page for and wide.


The difference this decision will make 

The events of 28 October 2016 had and continue to have, a devastating and profound effect on the rest of my life and of the lives of our two children. Two years on and we have still not been given suitable answers to our questions, or suitable reasons for the decision not to prosecute. We need to ensure that the CPS cannot make decisions that have such a profound effect on a grieving family’s life, without disclosing the information that has led to their decision.

Lauren was, and always will be, such a cherished lady. She was unique, happy and loved by so many. With so many questions unanswered, I must continue to fight for Lauren and our children.

 I cannot explain these events to my children and so we cannot move forward as a family without knowing the truth of this matter.  

Update 2

David Johnson

Nov. 2, 2018

Justice for Lauren - Campaign Response

Dear All,

Two weeks into the launch of our Crowd-Justice page and, more importantly, since we decided to open up about the position and emotional strain the CPS have placed upon our family, we have:

I mention the above only because one of our key aims with this page was to raise awareness as to what I believe is the unreasonable but very real power the CPS have to prevent families from fully understanding why they take decisions not to prosecute. And, as importantly, how they come to the decision to discount and mitigate information that could potentially support a case for prosecution. It seems that the CPS may have no real reason (at least in our case) as to why they do not want to share information other than they don’t have to or want to, so they won’t. The balance of power that sits very heavily in favour of this Public Agency over the individual is clearly not fair, or morally right.

The key to achieving all of the above remains You. No one-else. I put together a page and told the parts of our story that we could, but you were the ones to share and support. I have read through each and every comment, several times, and find it sad but not surprising that there are many more individuals out there that have suffered from a lack of transparency by the CPS. But, I also find it hugely encouraging seeing the levels of support we are receiving. As I have said previously, the common factor amongst us all is that regardless of the decision taken, there is absolute agreement that there should be no information left hidden from sight when a decision not to prosecute has been taken. If the individual who has taken a life in the most appalling manner is not made accountable for their actions, then the CPS should be accountable in fully documenting and detailing their reasons why they are not prepared to put that individual in front of a court of law to fully and openly explain and defend their actions.

As many of you will have seen the CPS responded to the media attention by stating they have medical evidence, and that the driver had a condition. I don’t think this Is the time or place to go into detail regarding the reality of our interactions with the CPS, but what I would say is their statement makes the whole decision not to prosecute sound very clear cut. I guess, for the CPS that should be a good thing and mean that the decision to prosecute with what must be clear and mitigating evidence will be an easy one to disclose and explain? Surely with such confidence they should have no concerns about the detail of their review being disclosed to all interested parties, and rather than fighting to prevent access to information they should be looking to disclose information that fully supports their decision? That, quite simply, is what we are looking for at this stage.

With their response the CPS completely missed the point of what we were requesting, with what I believe was another disappointing response and stance. I will repeat what we are looking for: We want accountability, and we want a full review of this case to take place in-front of a judge and jury. But, before that, we simply want answers to all our questions. And we want to see all information that has been referred to throughout by the CPS.

Unfortunately the Crowd-Justice page does not share all your details, and I only have the first name of those who have supported financially. Obviously, I do not have the details of those that have shared our page far and wide. But the same heart-felt thank you applies to you all, and I will continue to provide you all with updates as and when i get them.

This is not something that we will be walking away from. We owe it to Lauren to fight for answers. To fight for the real reasons why Lauren was taken away from her two children that day. Your continued to support is giving us the energy to keep this moving forward.

Love always.

Dave & family xx



Update 1

David Johnson

Oct. 24, 2018

Justice for Lauren - Campaign Response

Dear All,

It’s been less than a week since we launched our Crowd-Justice page, taking the decision to provide our friends, family and the broader community with an update on the actions and decisions taken since Lauren was stolen from us close to two years ago. We have tried hard to conduct ourselves in a dignified and responsible manner, following all the correct processes and protocols that are put in place. Unfortunately, the same level of respect and understanding is clearly not always given back to families; families who try so hard to simply understand the reasons behind the death of a loved one, and move forward with their lives. 


In less that a week we have exceeded our initial target of £15k. Infact we, or more YOU, achieved that in the first weekend. We are now well on our way to securing £30k which will go some-way to progressing our application for Judicial Review. The response has been phenomenal and it goes without saying just how overwhelmed i am. But, i am not surprised. The support we have received from the very start has been nothing short of special; support from people who know and continue to love Lauren, and people who do not know us but can appreciate the devastating impact this can and does have on families. This support has been on a national level, truly bringing together a common mindset. 


I wondered initially whether this page was the right thing to do, but your comments, contributions and your on-going support in sharing this message far and wide have rid me of that doubt. If there is one thing that we all have in common, it is that regardless of what the decision is, families at the very least deserve to be given answers. Comprehensive answers. Not selected statements and ambiguous responses, but a clear and documented update and rationale showing families how all possibilities have been considered and, where applicable, discounted. When a decision is made, the team behind that should be confident enough in their decision that the provision of supporting information becomes almost irrelevant to them. In-fact, they should be acting in the knowledge that the supporting information does nothing other than backs up that decision, but with the peace of mind that they are supporting families in their understanding and grieving process. Each and every organisation out there when making such significant decisions should be fully documenting the rationale for and against a number of available options. This information should then be shared in a transparent way with all interested parties. The CPS should be no different. 


We want accountability, and we want a full review of this case to take place in-front of a judge and jury. But, before that, we simply want answers to all our questions. And we want to see all information that has been referred to throughout by the CPS. 


Whilst there is no guarantee the judicial review application will result in disclosure, your support is helping to give this challenge as good a chance as possible. We have a great team behind us, a great team who are doing everything they can to show the human side of this request. Contributions aside, our story to date has been shared far and wide. There are other interested parties, and we will see where that leads us, but in the meantime i can’t thank you enough the support you are giving to our family. I am not the best with words, but please don’t ever under-estimate the positive impact even just a couple of words of support can have on a family doing everything to bring justice to the fore. 


I will provide you all with updates as and when i get them.


Love always.


Dave & family xx

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