Monday 23 April 2018

Man who crashed into woman he was due to meet on 'blind date' is facing prison

Trevor Woodside
Trevor Woodside

John Cassidy

A man has been remanded in custody after he drove a stolen car headlong into a vehicle driven by a woman he was due to meet on a first date.

A judge told Trevor Woodside (33) he faced a "substantial custodial sentence" when he returns to court in two weeks.

Woodside, of Castleview, Killyleagh, had pleaded guilty at Downpatrick Court, Co Down to causing grievous bodily injury by dangerous driving, aggravated vehicle taking, driving with excess alcohol and having no insurance.

Sam Magee, prosecuting, told the court the crash happened on March 30, 2014 when Woodside was due to meet the woman in Downpatrick for "their first date".

He said the defendant had taken a Mercedes car belonging to his employer without his permission and had been drinking earlier in the day.

The court heard the woman was travelling from Newry to Downpatrick and en route she received a number of text messages from Woodside asking about her location.

Mr Magee said the woman was driving along Ballydougan Road outside Downpatrick in her Volkswagen Golf at 45mph in a 60mph zone.

"As she approached the junction with the Drumcullen Road near Downpatrick race course, suddenly a black Mercedes car came at her at speed after having crossed to her side of the road.

"One witness said the black Mercedes passed their vehicle 'like a rocket'. The woman swerved in an attempt to avoid a collision, but to no avail." Following the crash, the court heard, the Golf careered down a bank and into trees.

Witnesses said the Mercedes "spun around before coming to rest in the grass verge".

Mr Magee said the woman needed surgery to her right foot and had a plate inserted. A chest injury meant she needed to have a drain inserted.

Five hours after the collision Woodside was found to have 154 milligrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of his blood. "He was twice the legal limit at this time," the prosecutor told Judge Grant.

The court heard that the speedometer of the Mercedes was stuck at between 75-80mph.

Mr Magee told the court Woodside "expressed his sorrow" for what happened and said he "could have killed himself and somebody else" that evening.

Refusing a defence application for Woodside to be bailed until sentence is passed on May 11, Judge Grant said: "I have heard all the relevant information.

"It is inevitable that a substantial custodial sentence must be imposed in this case."

Belfast Telegraph

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