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Oatlands crash: Sydney driver Samuel Davidson appeals jail sentence

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The man who killed four children walking on a footpath while driving drunk and drugged-up will appeal his maximum 28-year prison sentence.

Samuel William Davidson was driving erratically and speeding when he struck Veronique Sakr, 11, and her cousins, Sienna Abdallah, eight, and her siblings Angelina, 12, and Antony, 13.

The children had been walking to buy ice-creams when the 31-year-old ploughed into them after his ute mounted a kerb on Bettington Rd, at Oatlands, in Sydney’s northwest on February 1 last year.

Davidson was sentenced to a maximum term in prison of 28 years in April this year but may be eligible for parole after a minimum 21 years. 

His Legal Aid lawyer told the Court of Criminal Appeal on Thursday that Davidson would appeal against his sentence.

A hearing was set for May 2022.  

Immediately after Samuel William Davidson mowed down a group of children on a Sydney footpath, killing four of them, he was resigned to being jailed

Immediately after Samuel William Davidson mowed down a group of children on a Sydney footpath, killing four of them, he was resigned to being jailed

Siblings Sienna Abdallah, eight, Angelina, 12, and Antony, 13

Veronique Sakr, 11

Davidson, a professional truck driver, pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of Veronique Sakr, 11, and her cousins, Sienna Abdallah, eight, and her siblings Angelina, 12, and Antony, 13

Danny Abdallah (left) and Leila Abdallah arrive at Parramatta District Court for Davidson's sentencing

Danny Abdallah (left) and Leila Abdallah arrive at Parramatta District Court for Davidson’s sentencing

Danny Abdallah (right) said he forgave Davidson 'for your sake, for my sake, and most importantly for my family's sake' in a victim impact statement the court heard in March

Danny Abdallah (right) said he forgave Davidson ‘for your sake, for my sake, and most importantly for my family’s sake’ in a victim impact statement the court heard in March

Davidson is nearly two years into his sentence and is not expected to be eligible for parole until 2041. 

The news will be disappointing for supporters of the Abdullah and Sakr families. The members of both families showed remarkable grace in the wake of the horrific incident.

Danny Abdullah, the father of Sienna, Angelina and Antony, said at the time of Davidson’s sentencing that it did not matter whether he received one year or 100 years, ‘we won’t get Antony, Angelina, Sienna and Veronique back’. 

‘We will all have our hearts broken until the day we take our last breath and no sentence can help ease that pain.’ 

In sentencing Davidson at Parramatta’s District Court in April, Judge James Bennett said Davidson’s menacing, dangerous and aggressive driving over a significant period leading up to the tragic event showed all responsibility to the road safety of others was abandoned.

The tragedy was inevitable, but the magnitude of the tragedy extended to the unimaginable, Judge Bennett said. 

The professional truck driver was afforded a 25 per cent discount on sentence after pleading guilty to manslaughter for the children he killed and also pleading guilty to three charges relating to the injuries caused to three other children. 

One boy has suffered permanent brain damage.  

Bridget Sakr (centre) and Craig Mackenzie (right) arrive at Parramatta District Court for Davidson's sentencing

Bridget Sakr (centre) and Craig Mackenzie (right) arrive at Parramatta District Court for Davidson’s sentencing

In a statement Leila Abdallah (pictured) said she, her husband and the parents of Veronique had forgiven Davidson, referring to their Christian faith and their hope he will find God and repent

In a statement Leila Abdallah (pictured) said she, her husband and the parents of Veronique had forgiven Davidson, referring to their Christian faith and their hope he will find God and repent

Davidson, the son of a former policeman, had been sitting poolside with his housemates drinking Vodka Cruisers and beers, having his first drink about 7am before consuming drugs and driving on February 1, 2020.

He was observed by witnesses speeding through a red light, swerving anti-clockwise around a round-about, and driving at a maximum speed of 133km/h in a 50km/h zone.

After the crash, Davidson appeared distressed and was heard saying: ‘What have I done? … I have killed people … I am going to jail.’  

Judge Bennett acknowledged Davidson suffered from ADHD but did not accept impulsivity that day caused him to drive, seen in his consciousness of guilt immediately after the crash.

After Davidson’s sentencing, Mr Abdallah said his main disappointment lay in Australian culture’s love of drugs and alcohol.

‘That’s where my frustration is, more than the driver.’ 

Judge Bennett acknowledged Davidson suffered from ADHD but did not accept impulsivity that day caused him to drive, seen in his consciousness of guilt immediately after the crash.

Davidson’s letter of apology stated that he is heartbroken to have hurt such beautiful families by his horrid actions and that he would do anything to relive that day sober and never leaving the house. 

Leila Abdallah (pictured) lost three of her six children in horrific circumstances and told Davidson in court in March: 'You've killed us all. I'm no longer living. Just existing.'

Leila Abdallah (pictured) lost three of her six children in horrific circumstances and told Davidson in court in March: ‘You’ve killed us all. I’m no longer living. Just existing.’

After the crash, Davidson appeared distressed and was heard saying: 'What have I done? ... I have killed people ... I am going to jail.'

After the crash, Davidson appeared distressed and was heard saying: ‘What have I done? … I have killed people … I am going to jail.’

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Written by bourbiza

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