A serially violent driver who purposefully struck a Chessington pubgoer with a stolen car - and dragged the dad-of-two’s body under the vehicle for half a mile - has been caged for life.
Twisted Martin Eastwood smashed into Liam Dent, 25, with the stolen Ford S-MAX, after getting into a row with him at nearby pub.
Police say Liam’s body was dragged under the car for half a mile - or 800 metres - by Eastwood, before leaving him for dead.
Emergency services tried to save the young dad-of-two but he was pronounced dead at the scene.
Eastwood, 22, of Conifer Park, Kiln Lane, Epsom, was sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 30 years at the Old Bailey on Wednesday.
He had previously been convicted of murder at a trial last month.
Daniel Morris, 22, of no fixed address, who had pleaded guilty to manslaughter, was sentenced to five-and-a-half years behind bars.
It can now be revealed that Eastwood is a serial offender, who has previously been convicted for two similar offences - running people over in stolen cars.
The thug ran over a cyclist in a four-by-four, breaking his legs, feet, hands and ribs and leaving him in a wheelchair for 18 months.
He also robbed and ran over a man in Chessington, who was stabbed after being hit by a car.
Det Insp Garth Hall, from Specialist Crime Command, said: “This investigation required meticulous evidence gathering to ensure that Eastwood would be held accountable for his actions.
“It is clear from his behaviour he is a dangerous man who has no regard for the lives and wellbeing of others.”
In the early hours of July 2 2019, father-of-two Liam was struck by a Ford S-MAX in Osborne Way, Chessington, Kingston, and dragged for half a mile under the vehicle.
The driver failed to stop and the car was later found burnt out around a mile away.
Liam was pronounced dead at the scene.
The post-mortem examination established the cause of death as multiple injuries, further noting that some showed evidence of prolonged dragging.
An investigation discovered Liam and his friends had been involved in an altercation with the occupants of a stolen Volvo V40 outside a Chessington pub .
Words were exchanged and items were thrown but no one was injured during the incident.
Later that night, as Liam was going home with his friends, he was struck by the Ford S-MAX.
CCTV cameras in the area led detectives to footage of two vehicles – the Ford S-MAX and a black BMW, which was also stolen – travelling in convoy shortly before Liam was struck.
The Volvo was also subsequently found burnt out.
Telematics data from the car recorded its speed, proving it was stationary on the road where Liam was walking shortly before accelerating towards him moments before he was struck.
A total of 10 people were arrested between August and December 2019 on suspicion of offences including murder and perverting the course of justice.
And ahead of the first anniversary of Liam’s death, police and his family renewed appeals to the public for information and two men, Eastwood and Morris, were charged with his murder.
Detectives discovered Jasmine Robinson had assisted Eastwood following the fatal collision.
Robinson, 19, of Epsom, was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment, suspended for two years, having been convicted of assisting an offender.
Eastwood was earlier convicted of other charges at Kingston Crown Court in November 2021, for the two similar offences.
In September 2018, in West Ewell, a cycling suffered life-changing injuries after a brutal attack by Eastwood.
The thug chased the biker in an SUV and rammed it into him while he was riding.
The cyclist suffered broken legs, feet and hands and rib fractures, which left him in a wheelchair for more than 18 months - and he still struggles to walk unaided.
The car was found burnt out in Banstead later that night and had previously been stolen.
And on April 2 2019, in Chessington, a man was robbed of a chain and mobile phone and left with minor injuries after being deliberately driven into by a car and knocked to the floor.
He was then stabbed in the arm by two men who ran from the vehicle.
The car was subsequently located in Stoneleigh and had been stolen earlier that month.
Eastwood was charged in relation to both offences in December 2019.
Det Insp Hall added: “Our thoughts remain with Liam’s family and friends.”