A MOTORIST who was nine times over the drug drive limit when he struck a toddler has been jailed for 22 weeks and disqualified from driving.

Joe Oliver, 30, of Witham Road, Wickham Bishops near Maldon, was given 22 weeks for failing to stop after a road accident, careless driving and for two counts of driving while under the influence of drugs at Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court.

Oliver, who was found guilty of the offences, was ordered to pay compensation and fines totalling £1090 and was banned from driving for 35 months.

At around 10.40pm on Sunday June 3, Oliver crashed his Mercedes into a tree in Drakes Lane, Little Waltham, just north of Chelmsford.

He completed a road side drugs swipe, which was tested positive for cocaine and while under investigation, he got into his new BMW 120i M Sport Series on Sunday, June 24 before colliding with a girl in Cross Road.

She was left with a broken arm and leg, bruised lungs and scratches and cuts to her body.

Oliver also collided with three other vehicles before running off from the scene. He was arrested at around 6.15pm and results found he had cocaine in his system.

Investigating officer, Det Con Dawn Shearing, of Essex Police’s Serious Collision Investigation Team, said: “While being investigated for a drug driving offence, Oliver got into his car while nine times over the drug drive limit and struck a girl as she got out of a parked car.

“He then drove off while the girl’s parents were left cradling her with serious injuries.

“He was jailed and disqualified from driving for lengthy period of time.

“Following the collision, the victim spent six days in hospital, she had to use a wheelchair and she had difficulty sleeping in her own bed.

“She missed out on playschool for many weeks and when she returned, she had to use a walking frame. Today, she still experiences difficulties with one of her injuries.

“She has shown an enormous amount of bravery following what would have been a traumatic experience. I hope this outcome offers her and her family some comfort.”