Man drove off from the scene of accident

A 57 year old Dromore man who pulled out of a junction colliding with a van and causing £4,800 damage, drove off from the scene of the accident, heard last week’s local court.

Sean John Joseph Darby from Holm Terrace, pleaded guilty to driving without due care and attention, failing to report, failing to report and failing to stop.

He was fined a total of £325 and given six penalty points as well as a £15 offender’s levy.

The court heard from a PPS prosecutor who explained how on 30 August last police were informed of a damage only hit and run accident at Fernhill Road, Katesbridge.

The injured party said he was travelling from Katesbridge towards Rathfriland when another vehicle pulled out in front of him causing a collision. The other driver failed to stop at the scene and the vehicle made off towards Rathfriland.

Two independent witnesses corroborated this version of events and enquiries led police to Darby.

He confirmed he had been driving the vehicle on the day in question and said he “did touch a van” but thought the collision was “slight with no damage” so he drove on.

District Judge Mr Paul Copeland said Darby made “a significant error or judgement” adding, “in my view he clearly knew he was involved in an accident and chose to leave either in distress or panic.”

However Mr Copeland said the defendant had an exemplary record and had shown remorse.

He was warned that he could face seven days in prison if the fines were not paid on time.