Truck driver who killed police officer knew brakes were faulty

Samandeep Singh knew his truck brakes were faulty, but drove on anyway before hitting and killing a Victorian police officer.Samandeep Singh. (AAP)

The truck wasn't roadworthy, Singh knew the rear brakes were not working and the front brakes were compromised because the vehicle was loaded incorrectly. "I started trying to brake from about a kilometre away and the truck wasn't slowing down fast enough," he told a witness after the January 12 crash at a Wantirna intersection. The 14-tonne Isuzu truck, owned by Ermes Transport, had a record of shoddy maintenance by an unqualified mechanic, but Singh initially denied knowing about any problems.

The 30-year-old pleaded guilty to dangerous driving causing death on the eve of his third trial attempt in March. Const. De Leo's devastated partner faced Singh in the County Court today, after more than three years of fighting for justice.

"I'm merely surviving," Krisztina Toth said. "How do you let go of your partner who died under such horrific circumstances at such a young age?" Const.

De Leo's weeping father said he didn't want revenge or hate Singh. "D'Arne had more good in her than I have," Patrick De Leo said. "She would want this man to become a better person."

(C) AAP 2020

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