A WOMAN who ran over a man she thought was a Bonfire Night guy or scarecrow lying in road has been jailed.

Marian Watt, 60, was found guilty of causing serious injury by dangerous driving after the incident on November 25, last year.

Now the victim, Alresford man Laurence John, has said that because of the severe pain he still suffers, at times he wishes she "had done a decent job on me and killed me".

Winchester Crown Court heard that while walking home from The Yew Tree pub, near Alresford, along Yew Tree Lane, the 55-year-old fell into the road, where he was lying unconscious.

Prosecutor Christopher Amis said the reason why he was lying in the road was not known, but that he wasn't drunk.

Then, at around 11.30pm while driving her Toyota Land Cruiser, the court heard Watt came across Mr John in the road, and after getting out to see what the obstructions was, thought it was a Bonfire Night guy or scarecrow and drove over it.

The court heard that Mr John spent months in hospital due to the severity of his injuries, and is still in severe pain.

Speaking in court, he said: "I do at times feel it might have been better for Marian Watt to have done a decent job on me and killed me, such is the despair."

Mr John added the injuries he suffered have been life-changing, spending "75 per cent of my time lying up or upside down on an inversion table, like a bat" to relieve the pain.

Mitigating, David McNeill said Watt's actions had been a "truly terrible lapse in judgement".

Jailing Watt, of South Town Road, Medstead, for 12 months and banning her from the road for two years, Judge Keith Cutler, the Recorder of Winchester, described added that it was a "dreadful" and "inexplicable" decision.

Judge Cutler added: "That was found by a jury to be a decision no careful or competent driver would have taken."

Watt was also ordered to take an extended test before regaining her licence.

Following the hearing, PC Dave Mitchell, from the Serious Collision Investigation Unit, said: “This is a highly unusual case but what happened on that night had tragic and far reaching consequences for the victim.

“At all times of year but especially with the nights drawing in and with Halloween and Bonfire Night around the corner, drivers need to be aware of unusual activity.

“If you see something in the road, it is your duty to ensure it is safe to continue.

“The timing of this case serves as a reminder to anyone who gets behind the wheel of any vehicle that they are responsible for all the decisions they take as a driver."