Northern Ireland news

Cyclist doesn't want motorist who hit her sent to jail

Danny McCrory, from Cornshell Fields in Derry, was handed a suspended sentence

A Russian woman who was knocked off her bicycle as she cycled to work in the City Hotel in Derry told prosecutors she didn't want the motorist sent to jail.

Danny McCrory, 64, from Cornshell Fields, was originally charged with causing grievous bodily harm by dangerous driving as a result of the collision at the junction of Clarendon Street and Queen Street on the morning of Sunday October 15, 2017.

McCrory's guilty plea to the lesser charge of causing grievous bodily injury by careless driving was rejected by the PPS, however the victim told the prosecution that she wanted them to accept the plea to the lesser charge because she didn't want McCrory to go to jail. The prosecutor told Judge Philip Babington that the complainant's attitude towards the defendant was charitable, stoic and forgiving.

CCTV footage of the incident was played to Derry Crown Court. It showed the defendant driving across Queen Street towards the junction with Clarendon Street. He slowed down to a speed of about 10 mph and continued through the junction, where there are two stop signs, without stopping. His car struck the cyclist and she was thrown several feet into the air before landing on the road.

She sustained several broken vertebrae, facial and lip lacerations and she also lost two teeth.

Defence barrister Ciaran Mallon QC said his client "is very grateful that the injured party has indicated such a forgiving approach to his culpability in that she does not want a custodial sentence."

Judge Babington said McCrory had been driving for over thirty years before the accident and since it occurred he seldom drove.

He imposed a six month jail sentence, suspended for two years, and disqualified McCrory from driving for three years.

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