Friday 9 December 2016

Man who caused death of nurse in 'horrific' two-car collision was driving at 'phenomenal' speed

Ashleigh McDonald

Published 25/05/2016 | 19:44

'Highly-skilled' nurse Heather Steele
'Highly-skilled' nurse Heather Steele

A man who caused the death of a "dedicated and highly-skilled" nurse in a "horrific" two-car collision has been handed a five-year jail sentence.

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Neil McKee (26), from Castleburn Road in Carrickfergus, Co Antrim was also banned from driving for seven years for causing the death by dangerous driving of 53-year-old Heather Steele.

The former G4S employee was told he will spend half his sentence in prison, with the rest on supervised licence after release.

Belfast Crown Court heard McKee's Seat Leon crashed into Ms Steele's Suzuki Ignis in Carrickfergus at around 8pm on August 27, 2014.

McKee was driving well in excess of the 40mph limit on the main Belfast to Carrick road, and caused the collision at the junction of Castlerocklands Road.

Several witnesses observed McKee's driving just prior to the collision, with one describing the speed as "phenomenal".

Another witness, whose car was overtaken by McKee, estimated the car was being driven at speeds between 60-70mph. The witness said: "I thought it was being driven so dangerously it was going to kill someone."

Passing sentence, Judge Gordon Kerr said McKee came before the court with a clear record, and accepted he had shown remorse. It also emerged that since he caused Ms Steele's death, McKee has been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

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