A banned driver today admitted killing a ‘perfect couple’ as they rode their cherished tandem bicycle.
Nicky Lovell, 38, ploughed into Ross Simons, 34, and his wife Clare, 30, as they pedalled to visit relatives on a Sunday afternoon.
They suffered horrific injuries and both died at the scene in Hanham, Bristol, despite frantic attempts by paramedics to save them.
Cowardly Lovell, who fled the scene, yesterday admitted causing their death by dangerous driving and driving while disqualified.
He was remanded in custody for sentencing with the maximum penalty for causing death by dangerous driving 14 years in prison.
Lovell’s callous partner Louise Cox, 35, a passenger in the car, admitted giving police a false name and lying over who was driving their Citroen Picasso.
She was remanded on bail for sentencing on May 22, the same date as Lovell, and a pre-sentence report will be prepared on her.
Her barrister said Cox had been under a supervision order at the time of the tragedy on January 27.
Relatives of the victims packed Bristol Crown Court for the brief hearing to hear the guilty pleas of the two accused, from Oldland Common, South Glos.
Judge Neil Ford, QC, said: “The case is now being adjourned for the preparation of a pre-sentence report.
“The fact I am adjourning the case is not an indication of the type of sentence you will receive. That is a matter for the sentencing judge.”
No details of the tragedy were given during the hearing.
Ross, who worked for his family’s property firm, and fashion store assistant Clare had been married for a year and a half and about to begin IVF treatment to start a family.
The couple, from Staple Hill, Bristol, had only recently bought their tandem bike and were enjoying one of their first rides on it.
After the hearing Detective Chief Inspector Rachel Williams said: “On Sunday January 27 of this year, Clare and Ross Simons needlessly lost their lives following a fatal collision.
“This collision was caused by Nicholas Lovell, a disqualified driver who got behind the wheel of the car and drove at speed, before losing control and striking the couple while they cycled.
“Nicholas Lovell then ran away from the scene in a bid to escape, leaving behind Louise Cox who then deliberately and callously set out to mislead police at the scene.
“The pleas entered today by both Nicholas Lovell and Louise Cox reflect that both have taken some responsibility for the deaths of Ross and Clare.
“While these pleas will never bring Ross and Clare back, I hope they go some way to providing comfort for their families.
“We now await sentencing on May 22.”
Grieving relatives described Ross and Clare as ‘the perfect couple’ and held candlelit vigils at the scene of their deaths.
Ross’ sister Kelly Woodruff said: “They were two amazing people and so, so loved.
“To have them taken away from us is heart-wrenching.
“They were the perfect couple. They loved each other unconditionally, they were made for each other.
“Ross was the best brother. We were very close and I don’t know what I’ll do without him.
“He did anything for everyone. If you asked most people here, he did something for them, mended their roof for nothing.
“Clare was equally special. She brought her own qualities. She had a heart of gold.
“It was a privilege to have her as a sister in law and as a friend.
“You won’t find one person who has a negative thing to say about Ross and Clare because they were such a magical couple.”
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