CARRICK MAN GETS FOUR YEAR JAIL SENTENCE

21 October 2011 No Comments by The Northern Standard

By PATSY McARDLE

A 29-years-old Carrickmacross man who was the driver of a car which claimed three lives, and the life of an unborn infant, in a horrific crash in South Monaghan, was ordered to spend three years in prison by a judge at a sitting of the Circuit Criminal Court in Carrickmacross on Tuesday last.
Kevin McArdle of Longfield, Carrickmacross, appeared in custody and pleaded guilty to dangerous driving causing death in the wake of a three-vehicle collision on December 27th last, which claimed the lives of the three adults and the unborn baby.
Judge John O’Hagan sentenced McArdle to four years’ imprisonment, but suspended the final year of the sentence, declaring that he took into account the fact that McArdle had voluntarily gone into custody, after announcing his decision to plead guilty last May.
The judge said he was also “taking into account” charges which McArdle faced of drunken driving and driving without insurance, and he banned him from driving for a period of twelve years..
Judge O’Hagan also declared that if McArdle had opted not to plead guilty to the charges he would be facing a jail term of six to seven years.
Mr. Frank Martin B.L. who was instructed by Mr. Barry Healy, State Solicitor, Monaghan, acted for the prosecution, and the acused was represented by Mr. Michael O’Higgins S.C., and Mr. Ken Connolly B.L., instructed by Mr. Gerry Jones, solr., Carrickmacross.
The court heard from Superintendent Noel Cunningham, Carrickmacross who led the investigation into the crash, that the gardai established McArdle, who was operating a licensed premises in Kingscourt at the time, had consumed nine pints of beer, and five brandies, before the fatal crash. He and his friends had driven to a number of pubs in the region.
Eye witnesses had also described the car he was driving traveling on its incorrect side, after overtaking some other vehicles at speed on the roadway.

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