THE dad of a young woman killed when her drink driver boyfriend smashed his van has told of the heartbreaking moment he found out she died.
Dominique Wright, 23, was a passenger in partner Benjamin Hughes’ motor when it careered off the road and crashed into a tree near Nottingham in October 2016.
Hughes, 24, was seen downing pints of beer and shots before taking the wheel when the couple missed the last bus on a night out.
Dominque, who wasn’t wearing a seatbelt, was killed instantly while Hughes, a self-employed plumber, was able to climb from the van.
He told passers-by he had “killed the love of his life” before he was arrested and sentenced to two years for causing death by dangerous driving while over the prescribed alcohol limit.
Now, Dominque’s dad David has made an emotional appeal to drivers to avoid drinking — saying: “It’s such a fine line between life and death.”
Paying tribute to his “beautiful” daughter, he said: “Dominique was a gorgeous, bubbly and very caring person who was really well loved by her family and friends.
“She was the life and soul of the party and was the sort of person who would do anything for anybody.”
Tearful David also revealed the last conversation they had together.
He said: “The last time I saw her I think I kissed her on the cheek or forehead and I said, ‘See you later darling, love you’ and she said the same back.”
David said he was woken at 2am by police officers at his door to tell him of the horror crash.
He said: “I looked out of the curtains of the bedroom and I could see the high viz jacket of the policeman. “I don’t know why but I immediately knew what had happened. I knew it would be something terrible”.
The grief from Dominique’s death has even stopped the family from sending cards any more “because it’s difficult to write the name at the end of it”.
PC Adam Taylor, of the East Midlands Operational Support Services, said: “Driving while affected by drink or drugs is wholly unacceptable and a crime.”
He added: “There are massive life-changing consequences for those who commit the crime in terms of the potential loss of their job, relationship and freedom to drive.
“More importantly, if you drink and drive the risk of being involved in a serious collision increases hugely and the risk of suffering the worst of injuries in a collision doesn’t differentiate, no matter whether you are with your partner, your parents or your children.
“I would ask people to consider whether the risk of living with those consequences is worth a glass of wine or pint of beer?”