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Unlawful killing verdict after Daws Hill inquest
MOTORCYCLIST Jeremy Edwards was unlawfully killed after he hit a concrete block, a coroner ruled this week.
Mr Edwards died after his motorbike struck the concrete block, which had been deliberately placed in the middle of the road, at about 6.30am on Sunday, October 7.
He hit one of several obstructions which had been placed in the middle of Daws Hill Lane near the former airbase hours earlier.
The inquest into his death heard he was travelling at at least 51mph - but collision investigator Adrian White said it was likely he would have died even if he had been riding at the 30mph speed limit.
Motorist Adam Noon said he drove along Daws Hill Lane from High Wycombe town centre to drop off a friend of his girlfriend's at around 3am, before returning along the same road some time between 3.30-3.45am.
He said there was no debris in the road on the first journey but he found several obstructions when making the return trip, stopping sharply to remove a rock from the carriageway.
Mr Noon told the inquest: "It was about the size of a medicine ball and the same weight. I had a good little rant about it being there and the danger it had caused. I had the opinion it had been placed there deliberately - there were no scratches on the road as if it had fallen."
More obstructions had been placed in the road further ahead, he added.
He said: "There was another one three metres ahead in my lane of the road. There was a large log at 90 degrees to the road no more than a metre ahead. I moved the rock then the log.
"They were very heavy. I thought it would have to be a fit strong person to move them. I couldn't understand how or why they got there and didn't know where they had come from.
"I thought there was someone watching to see what effect they would have.
"A car wouldn't have been able to drive around them."
The rock which caused the fatal collision weighed 31kg, investigating officer Mike Sapwell told the inquest.
He said during an initial appeal for information ten people came forward and said they had seen the rock in the middle of the road along the white line separating the two lanes.
Mr Edwards, known to friends as Spud, hit the rock after riding in the gap between two speed bumps along the road. The rock had come from outside one of the houses on Daws Hill Lane.
The motorbike came to a halt 88 metres away from the point of impact.
A police investigation into the death of 52-year-old Asda employee Mr Edwards, of Station Road, Loudwater, is still ongoing.
Coroner Richard Hulett said: "The evidence in front of me is that some individual - for reasons which are impossible to grasp, although I can venture a suspicion - walked along that road that night and took it upon themselves to remove items from the frontages of houses and put them into the road.
"He stood no chance when he hit this lump of rock.
"This is not an accident, this is not misadventure - this is a deliberate and thoroughly reckless act by somebody persuing a course of action. The only verdict I can return here is unlawful killing."
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