Man died attempting ‘Starsky and Hutch’ style car stunt


A 20-year-old died in a failed ‘Starsky and Hutch’ style stunt after trying to jump 30ft across a harbour – in his car, an inquest heard.

Jamie Hocking tried to use his white Rover hatchback to leap across a large gap in the quayside in Porthleven, Cornwall.

He had ”regularly” told friends he would ”one day” use a pier as a ramp and leap over the water and land on the other side.

Seconds before the fatal crash he was seen revving his engine before driving through a chain security barrier.

Jamie – who was over twice the drink-drive limit – drove off the pier but toppled straight over the edge and plunged into the sea.

Eyewitness Helen Sankey told the inquest that Jamie had tried to jump the gap by accelerating ”violently”.

She said: ”I could see a car going forwards and backwards into a chain preventing access to the harbourside. I ran back into the pub to get help before returning to the scene.

”The car was accelerating violently. It made a final run at the chain and this time made it through. It was so dark.”

Jamie, described as a ”happy go lucky” farm worker of Helston, Cornwall, died on December 18 last year after a Christmas party with friends.

He had drunk about ten pints of lager and cider during the session and after his death was found to be twice over the legal drink driving limit.

The inquest in Truro heard Jamie regularly told his friends he would take on the stunt and jump 30ft across the harbour.

But police officers later said it would have been ”impossible” for him to have successfully completed the stunt.

Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service, coastguards, two RNLI lifeboats, police and ambulance crews were called when the car plunged into the water.

A search and rescue helicopter was also scrambled and divers were able to attach a winch to the rear axle and tow the car out.

Forensic collision officers later said tyre marks on the quay indicated Jamie’s car had hit a bollard before he plunged into the water.

Coroner Dr Emma Carlyon recorded an open verdict and drowning as the cause of death.

Speaking after the hearing, Mr Hocking’s family thanked those who had tried to rescue him and said he was ”dearly missed” by many.

A statement said: ”Jamie was tragically taken from his family and many friends. He was a loveable rogue and will be truly missed by all who knew him.

”We would like to thank everyone for their support and kind messages of sympathy and also the emergency services who attended the scene of the accident.”


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