Defiant family of hit and run victim Dylan Price 'will keep appealing' despite vile troll

The defiant family of Shropshire teenager killed in a hit and run have said "we'll still be appealing", despite the torment of a vile internet troll.

The family of Dylan Price, inset, outside Telford Magistrates Court. From left; Dylan's uncle Steve Weaver, aunt Janet Price, sister Izzy Price, stepfather Steve Bristow and grandmother Betty Guntrip.
The family of Dylan Price, inset, outside Telford Magistrates Court. From left; Dylan's uncle Steve Weaver, aunt Janet Price, sister Izzy Price, stepfather Steve Bristow and grandmother Betty Guntrip.

Dylan Price was killed the day before his 18th birthday, hit by a vehicle while walking along the B4385 Brampton Road in Bishop’s Castle, during the early hours of September 19.

Police are still hunting for the person responsible for Dylan's death, and the family have put out several appeals.

But David Brown, aged 59, became "p***ed off at seeing 'Dylan, Dylan, Dylan' all over Facebook". He decided to troll Dylan's family with a campaign of fabricated messages, which gave them false hope that his killer may be caught.

Brown confessed to two counts of sending false information, contrary to the Malicious Communications Act 1988 at Telford Magistrates Court and will be sentenced at crown court.

Members of Dylan's family, including his sister Izzy, stepfather Steve Bristow, uncle Steve Weaver, aunt Janet Price and grandmother Betty Guntrip, were sat at the back of the courtroom as Brown's crimes were read out in detail.

After hearing Brown's reasoning for sending the distressing messages, Steve, Dylan's stepfather, said: "He wants to try being in our shoes. No matter what he thinks, we'll still be appealing."

Izzy said: "It takes a lot for us to sit there and hear those messages out loud. It brings it all back. I don't think he showed remorse.

"It brought us anger and hurt. After all that, we're still no further forward in finding who killed Dylan. We were hoping he was going to give us that information but he just strung us out.

"We just want those answers. I don't think we can fully move on until we know. It's just not possible. You try and live your day to day life but you're still waiting.

Janet added: "The pain he's inflicted on us as a family cannot be put into words."

David Brown

The court heard how Brown, who had not told his own family what he had done before he appeared before magistrates, first messaged Dylan’s stepfather under the pseudonym “John Thomas”.

He wrote to Steve on July 10 this year, claiming that he was in hospital, but believed he was responsible for Dylan’s death.

Steve messaged back saying “thank you for coming forward and being honest, and owning up if it was you,” and urged him to contact police.

However Brown continued a back and forth, making false claims over a fight in a pub, before suggesting somebody else was driving, and they had moved Dylan’s body from the side of the road.

After the court hearing, Steve said: "My emotions [at the time] were all over the place. But I had to try and keep calm and keep the conversation going so we could give the information to the police."

After messaging Steve, Dylan’s terminally ill mother Louise Bristow got in touch with Brown’s “John Thomas” Facebook account, pleading for him to tell her who he was.

She told him: “I’ve had bad news from my consultant,” and that he would “feel so much better” if he told her who he was.

But a message exchange ensued in which Brown made distressing claims about Dylan’s body being moved.

Louise wrote: “I know this must be stressful for you, but I’m trying to put the pieces together.”

She was too unwell to attend court, but her victim impact statement was read. In it, she said the family have had a “horrendous couple of years”, and didn’t understand “how someone could play with our emotions like that”.

“The effect this has had on my family has been devastating,” she added. “We’re all a mess and this has added to it. It’s just heartbreaking.”

Stephen Scully, mitigating, said Brown, who is a carer for his wife and two of his children, had a history of mental problems and at the time was “self-medicating with a mixture of alcohol and speed”.

He added that Brown had been “too embarrassed” to tell his family what he had done and was “extremely remorseful”.

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