The man who filmed a police officer while she lay dying on the road after being hit by a truck could walk free from prison in the coming days, after receiving a backdated sentence of 10 months in prison.
In April 2020, 42-year old Richard Pusey was pulled over by police while driving his Porsche on Melbourne’s Eastern Freeway at speeds of up to 149km/h.
After four police officers exited their vehicle – which had parked in an emergency lane – they were hit by a truck, which resulted in their deaths.
Mr Pusey was going to the toilet further down the freeway when this occurred.
He then took his phone from a police vehicle and filmed the dying officers, complaining they had ruined his dinner plans.
Instead of helping the officers, he told witnesses, “They’re dead”.
He was later heard saying: “It’s amazing. That is fucking justice.”
Mr Pusey used his mobile phone to film Leading Senior Constable Lynette Taylor while she lay dying.
In the video, he can be heard saying: “There you go, amazing, absolutely amazing. All I wanted to do was go home and have some sushi and now you fucked my fucking car.”
He also says: “Look at that, man. You cunts, you fucking cunts. I guess I’ll be getting an Uber home.”
He left the scene and, while he did not post the footage to social media, he sent it to a number of other people.
Mr Pusey was initially refused bail by the County Court of Victoria on charges relating to a fatal road crash which killed four police officers. Part of reason for the refusal was that Pusey was facing unrelated theft and assault charges.
His criminal defence lawyers are expected to make an application for bail in respect of his pending unrelated charges once the 10 month sentence expires which, if successful, will mean their client is released from custody.
He was originally charged with 16 offences, but the parties resolved the situation after battling for months over which charges should remain.
During the sentencing hearing, Judge Wraight took into account the impact of negative publicity on Mr Pusey – including the fact he received death threats.
He factored in Mr Pusey’s pleas of guilty, and accepted he was genuinely remorseful.
The judge made clear, however, that Pusey’s conduct was “heartless, cruel and disgraceful”, and there was a need for general deterrence in such cases.
The judge ultimately sentenced Pusey to 10 months in prison; a sentence which expires in a few days given he has been remanded in custody for close to that period of time
He was also fined $1000 and disqualified from driving for two years, backdated to October 2020 when his licence was first suspended.
He has additionally been ordered to undergo ongoing psychological treatment in the community upon release.
Family, colleagues and friends of the officers who died have expressed their dismay at what they believe is the ‘leniency’ of the sentence.
The truck driver and the trucking company
The truck driver responsible for the crash, Mohinder Singh is serving 22 years in prison on four counts of culpable driving causing death, three drug trafficking charges and drug possession.
The manager of the trucking company Mr Singh worked for, Simiona Tuteru, has also been charged with four counts of manslaughter over the fatal accident, for allowing Mr Singh on the road despite his condition.
Mr Tutera’s case is expected to be heard in the coming months.