Katie Bagwell, 19, and her ex-boyfriend Craig Chant, 21, were driving home from a pub in Somerset, England, last October when Chant lost control of the vehicle, crashing it into River Parrett. Chant and another passenger escaped, but Bagwell drowned.
Chant leaned over to kiss Bagwell, and the “moment of inattention” caused him to lose control of car, Taunton Crown Court heard on June 15. Chant admitted to careless driving while under the influence of alcohol and the judge handed down the minimum sentence because of his plea — 21 months in prison and a four-year driving ban.
Bagwell had just started an internship at Honey Tree Publishing. Her boss, Sebastian Galbraith-Helps, told the Daily Mirror she was “divine.”
“She had embarked on an internship with us just three weeks ago. It was her personality, attitude and her design skills that attracted her to her because as a premium bespoke stationary company we needed somebody who was creative and that was very much her background and her qualifications,” he said.
Chant’s lawyer said his client felt genuine remorse for the accident. Mark Bagwell, the victim’s father, told the court his family members would be heartbroken for the rest of their lives.
After her death, her family set up a memorial Facebook page which has garnered more than 2,700 likes. A bench in her honor will be placed at South Petherton Cemetery near her gravesite.
Image via Katie Bagwell/Facebook