A DEATH crash driver who had no licence has escaped a jail term.
William Moon failed his driving test four or five times, but continued to drive for years, a court heard.
The 54-year-old was in his Renault Megane when he hit a cyclist.
Lee Anthony Davison, 31, was killed after the collision near the Nissan plant.
Although a police road traffic expert said Moon had “little or no opportunity to avoid a collision”, he was charged after admitting he only held a provisional driving licence.
Moon admitted causing death while driving without a licence and received a suspended jail sentence at Sunderland Magistrates’ Court.
He was also banned from the roads for five years.
The court heard that Mr Davison may not have had a rear light on his bike, as he rode along the A1290 towards Town End Farm, but was wearing a hi-vis jacket.
Moon, of Chelmsford Square, Hylton Castle, went to overtake the cyclist at the junction with Cherry Blossom Way, when he turned right in front of the car, on January 25.
Mr Davison suffered head injuries and was pronounced dead at Sunderland Royal Hospital.
Prosecutor Michael Rose said: “To be fair to Mr Moon, nobody is saying his manner of driving caused the unfortunate death of the cyclist that was killed.
“The fault of him was that he was driving at all on that day.”
The offence of driving while unlicensed does not require proof of any fault in the standard of driving.
Moon was insured, Mr Rose added, and had been giving a colleague a lift home from work.
If the car had been displaying L-plates and a qualified driver had been supervising, he would not have ended up in court.
Defending, Michael Robinson said Moon, who still blamed himself for the accident, had not been back to work since and was receiving treatment from his GP.
“The defendant has said he will never drive again.
“I hope that he does come to terms with the fact that, yes, because he was in the vehicle an accident occured, but those that know better than him have concluded he is not responsible.
“I hope he will eventually take comfort from that.
“I hope eventually he will come to that conclusion and reach a certain amount of peace, because since this incident he has had no peace.”
Chairman of the bench Peter Cowling imposed a six-month prison sentence, suspended for 12 months. He ordered to Moon carry out 100 hours of unpaid work.