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Kerala woman Dimple Thomas pleads guilty to causing death of Melbourne baby

Melbourne, February 15: Dimple Thomas today pleaded guilty to one count of dangerous driving causing death of a baby.

Dimple Grace Thomas who hails from Kerala, India, had crossed three lanes against a ‘give-way’ sign and made an ‘illegal’ right turn, onto South Gippsland Highway, crashing into another car at 60km per hour, on August 8 last year.

The court summary said that the other driver was a 28-weeks pregnant woman, who endured severe stomach pains and was rushed to the Royal Women’s Hospital.

There, she was forced to have an emergency caesarean as a result of injuries to her placenta.

Baby Milarniah, however, died in hospital two days later, on August 10, from “multi-organ failure”.

Dimple Grace Thomas
Dimple Grace Thomas

After this incident in Cranbourne, Victoria Police Major Collision Investigation Unit, on November 2, charged Dimple, 31, with dangerous driving causing death, recklessly engaging in dangerous conduct and careless driving, court documents showed.

Late last year, on November 9, the Melbourne Magistrates Court heard that the 25-year-old pregnant woman was driving on Thomsons Road near the intersection of the South Gippsland Highway in Cranbourne, when she was struck by Dimple’s car leaving a car park.

Dimple appeared before the court and was bailed out. She nodded that she understood her bail conditions when asked by deputy chief magistrate Jelena Popovic.

She surrendered her passport and was bailed out with strict conditions, including not leaving Victoria and not attending any points of international departure.

She was also told that she could not to apply for a new passport and must notify authorities if she changes her residential address.

She was refrained from contact witnesses.

On Tuesday, the Magistrates Court heard the prosecution case which stated that Dimple had defied a ‘give-way’ sign and an ‘arrow sign pointing-left’. She tried to turn right against on-coming traffic.

The prosecution stated that Dimple used a median lane otherwise reserved for cars coming from the opposite direction.

Although Dimple admitted to causing the death of baby Milarniah, she maintained she did not understand that she could not turn right at the intersection, the Court heard yesterday.

Upon Dimple’s guilty plea, prosecutors withdrew all other charges against Dimple, including reckless conduct placing a woman at risk of injury, careless driving and failing to give way.

Magistrate Charles Rozencwajg released Dimple on bail and she will now appear at the County Court for a pre-sentence hearing on June 13.

Ramakrishna VenuGopal

feature image: courtesy Eddie Jim @AGE

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