Monday 26 September 2016

Driver in fatal motorway crash after garda chase was drinking in car

Published 19/10/2015 | 18:24

A photo of Diana Harton at the Church of the Sacret Heart in Kilinarden in Tallaght
A photo of Diana Harton at the Church of the Sacret Heart in Kilinarden in Tallaght

A YOUNG driver whose car was being pursued by gardai when it struck another - with the female driver later dying - has said he was drinking in the vehicle and had earlier taken drugs.

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RTE News this evening reported on the inquest into the death of Diana Harton (43) on 23 October last year.

John Joyce (21), the driver of the car, gave evidence, and the coroner's court heard that all five occupants had been drinking in the vehicle.

Mr Joyce  - who took full responsibility for his actions and said he was sorry - also said that he had taken prescription drugs and cannabis.

RTE News reported that there was evidence that Mr Joyce hit speeds of 160km/h as the car was pursued by gardai - and that it had swerved across the motorway in an attempt to ram squad cars

Superintendent Martin Walker from Kildare Garda Station told the inquest the car which hit Ms Harton's car had come to the attention of gardaí ten minutes before the collision near the toll bridge on the Portlaoise side of the M7 motorway and gardaí began a pursuit.

Northbound Road Accident on M7 outside Kildare Town, Kildare.
Northbound Road Accident on M7 outside Kildare Town, Kildare.
Diana Harton from Co Kildare who was killed after a high speed chase .

The collision occurred 19.5km away at the off ramp on Junction 13 where Ms Harton's car was struck.

The inquest continues.

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