Monday 16 September 2019

Mother of tragic crash victim Nicola is 'livid' as truck driver is back in court again

Nicola Kenny
Nicola Kenny
Conor Feehan

Conor Feehan

THE family of a young woman killed by a truck driver who had fallen asleep at the wheel said they were "livid" he has now been convicted of drink- driving while banned.

Nicola Kenny (26) had been a mother for just one day when the collision happened on the M8 on September 5, 2016.

Ms Kenny had given birth in South Tipperary General Hospital to baby Lily Rose, but the child was transferred to Temple Street in Dublin.

Truck driver Ciaran McBride, of Listrakelt Road, Derrynoose, Co Armagh, pleaded guilty to careless driving last year. As well as a five-year driving ban, he was given an 18-month prison sentence, suspended for two years, and ordered to pay €10,000 in compensation to Ms Kenny's parents.

McBride has been caught drink-driving in the North, leading to a furious reaction from Nicola's mother, Ann.

McBride (33) pleaded guilty at Armagh Magistrates' Court to driving while disqualified, using a vehicle without insurance and driving with excess alcohol. The offences occurred on the Derrynoose Road in Keady on February 11.

His solicitor told the court McBride's "mental health deteriorated" following the crash and that he had become "dependent on alcohol".

But Ann Kenny said: "I am livid. We are devastated and very upset. He could have killed someone else.

"We had a choice in deciding if McBride would be charged with the more serious offence of dangerous driving but we didn't want two lives destroyed and gave him the benefit of the doubt. Now I wish we hadn't made that choice. There's obviously no remorse there from him. I wasn't angry before, but I'm angry now.

"And as for the €10,000 compensation, we haven't seen a cent of it. We were going to donate it to a children's hospital anyway, but it never came. I'll be demanding it now so I can pass it on to a hospital.

"McBride is claiming his mental health since the crash is to blame for him drink- driving. Well, all our mental health is affected. We are all depressed. We all have PTSD. But we're getting on with it, we're raising Nicola's baby. This is a kick in the teeth. It is horrendous."

On reading the pre-sentence report, District Judge Brian Archer stated: "This man was involved in a very serious road traffic incident in the Republic of Ireland that resulted in a fatality. Three years later he is drink-driving with a reading of 87mg of alcohol in breath."

McBride was sentenced to a combination order consisting of 75 hours of community service and two years on probation, as well as a 30-month driving disqualification.

"If you commit any further motoring offences you will be going to prison," the judge warned him.

Irish Independent

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