Dad admits killing son, 12, who died while walking on motorway after crash

A dad has pleaded guilty to the manslaughter[1] of his own 12-year-old son, who was killed in a crash[2] as he tried to run across a busy motorway - with his chilling final words revealed.

Callum Rycroft died after being struck by a car between junctions 25 and 26 of the M62 on August 5. Prior to his son's death, dad Matthew, 36, was driving drunk[3] on the road before crashing on a slip road whilst the youngster was still in the vehicle, according to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).

It added that the youngster had no speed awareness due to his disability and "should have been under the protection of his father". Rycroft also pleaded guilty to dangerous driving and failing to provide a specimen when appearing via a video link from prison on Tuesday. Rycroft, from Leeds, admitted driving an Audi Q5 dangerously on the day of the crash between Huddersfield and Hartshead Moor services.

The dad, who had taken his son to visit his parents in Huddersfield, had been drinking throughout the day. His parents urged him not to drive and offered him a place to stay overnight, but he refused their offer and drove away. He also pleaded guilty to failing to provide a specimen, which a court previously heard was at Leeds General Infirmary the next day.

"His parents called him and urged him to stop driving, but he paid no heed," the CPS said. "Callum was heard in the background saying 'Dad... won't stop'. They also tried to follow him, but Rycroft ignored them, and his Audi was seen driving erratically in Huddersfield, before joining the M62 at junction 25."

Matthew Rycroft had been 'drinking throughout the day' before crashing on the M62 in an incident that would later lead to the death of his son, Ryan ( Yapp App)

Witnesses reported seeing Rycroft swerving across the M62's lanes, before his car collided with a crash barrier, the CPS continued.He managed to exit the motorway at the service station, where he failed to negotiate a sharp bend on the slip road before striking the kerb causing the vehicle to overturn.

The CPS said: "Rycroft and Callum then began to walk toward the main carriageway. Callum called his mother, and dialled 999, but Rycroft told him to end the call. They were seen to cross the motorway to the central reservation, and then for an unknown reason tried to run back." It was then that Callum was struck by an oncoming vehicle, which killed him instantly.

Tom Neofytou from the CPS said: "This is an absolutely tragic incident involving the death of a 12-year-old boy. His father's insistence on driving while under the influence of alcohol is beyond comprehension. Rycroft continued to drive despite his parents' best efforts to stop him.

"His decision to leave the scene of the crash and attempt to cross the motorway while responsible for a young boy was reckless folly. Callum paid the ultimate price for his father's careless and criminal actions, and the rest of his family are left to mourn his loss. Our deepest sympathies remain with them."

Judge Rodney Jameson remanded Rycroft in custody until his sentencing, which he said would be no earlier than September 19.He told the defendant: "I can't, I'm afraid, tell you the exact date the court will pass sentence because a decision has to be made as to whether it needs to be dealt with by a high court judge."


  1. ^ manslaughter (
  2. ^ crash (
  3. ^ driving drunk (