Pensioner left counting the cost after drink driver ploughs into her Stoke Newington home
PUBLISHED: 09:50 13 May 2019 | UPDATED: 09:59 13 May 2019
An elderly woman who narrowly escaped death when her house was crashed into by a drink driver has been left “devastated” after a court heard she would receive no compensation.
Brenda Wicking, now in her late seventies, had just got home from the shops and was taking off her coat in the living room when a speeding car hurtled into the front of her house, leaving her inches away from the rubble in state of shock.
The driver, Nicola Chase, 31, was found guilty of driving under the influence and sentenced to 60 hours community service.
Ms Chase has had her licence suspended for just two years, along with being issued a £200 fine - none of which was given to Ms Wicking to help repair her home or pay for the call-out charge.
"It doesn't really seem like a fair outcome," Ms Wicking said. "It was devastating. I still feel lucky to be alive after what happened. I just can't believe it.
"I was just hanging my coat up, it was very frightening. It was quite a shock."
You may also want to watch:
Ms Wicking was forced to cover all the costs from the incident herself, including the emergency services call-out fee and the damage done to her house, which she was later able to claim back through home insurance.
"I just don't know why it was me that ended up paying for it, that doesn't seem right because it was terrible," she said.
"I'd like more people to know, because it doesn't seem right that somebody gets away with doing something like this, really.
Ms Wicking was not informed of the court proceedings and although a portion of the driver's fine went to a victim support fund, Ms Wicking received nothing.
"The court process all happened so fast and [I] wasn't told about any of it, so I wasn't sure what was going on."
Ms Wicking is still refurbishing the inside of her house. "I still haven't sorted everything out. It's been quite a lot of work, really," she said.
Ms Wicking said speeding is common in her road, which is adjacent to Stoke Newington's busy Church Street.
"They do come speeding up here sometimes and I've seen them nearly knock over cyclists so many times. They are not very careful. I feel like something should change."
If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Hackney Gazette. Click the link in the orange box below for details.