The 26-year-old police officer who is being prosecuted for causing a fatal accident in Eindhoven drove through the built-up area at 114 to 129 kilometers per hour. A 31-year-old motorcyclist was killed in the accident.
“It was much too hard and it should never have happened. I regret that I did it,” the officer said in the court in Den Bosch on Tuesday.
The Public Prosecution Service (OM) is prosecuting the officer because he “very significantly exceeded” the maximum speed, while according to the justice department there was no urgent reason for this.
On December 6, 2022, police officer Niels van H. was on his way to a report about a closed decoy bicycle. On the way he hit a motorcyclist crossing the Dr. Cuyperslaan in the Woensel-Zuid district of Eindhoven. The maximum speed there is 50 kilometers per hour.
Officer turns on flashing lights without permission
Moreover, Van H. turned on the blue flashing lights during the ride, even though he had not asked the control room for permission to do so. The 26-year-old officer drove a new car, which he said he was not used to.
“I tried to look as far ahead as possible, as we are taught in driver training,” he said. “I made the mistake of not keeping a close enough eye on the speedometer. When I heard the speed afterwards, I was really shocked.”
‘I was no longer on time’
The on-board computer shows that Van H. drove through the intersection at 114 to 129 kilometers per hour. Half a second before the collision, he slammed on the brakes. The officer threw his handlebars to the right in an attempt to avoid the motorcyclist.
“But I was no longer in time. We hit the motorcycle. I tried to avoid the trees in the skid that we saw coming towards us.”
Family members of the deceased victim exercise their right to speak during the criminal case. The Public Prosecution Service then comes up with a penalty demand.