19 Aug 2022

Drove on wrong side of road and rear-ended car

Drove on wrong side of road and rear-ended car

A 25-year-old man who drove on the wrong side of the road and rear-ended a vehicle has been fined and disqualified from driving.

Aaron Cooney, Lisheen View, The Lamb, Kilbride, Co. Wicklow, was charged with two counts of dangerous driving, no licence or insurance, and failing to provide a sample.

When the case first came before the court in May, Garda Quinlan gave evidence that on February 15 this year, there was a report of dangerous driving on the M7 heading towards to Abbeyleix.

Garda Quinlan said that an off-duty garda had observed the car driving on the opposite side of the road for a number of kilometres, barely missing oncoming traffic. The car also rear-ended another vehicle in Abbeyleix before driving on.

The gardaí observed the car, a silver Mercedes, parked up on the footpath and they saw the driver exit the car and go into the Bank of Ireland.

The garda spoke to the driver, Aaron Cooney, and got a strong smell of alcohol from him and noticed that his eyes were bloodshot and he was unsteady on his feet.

The accused was arrested and brought to Portlaoise Garda Station, but failed to provide a specimen when requested. The accused had five previous convictions.

Judge Catherine Staines said it was very fortunate the gardaí had stopped the accused as he could have killed somebody.

The judge said she was considering a prison sentence, but said she would postpone penalty until the accused completes a driver educational programme.

The matter was put back to July 19.

When the case returned to court last week, defence, Mr Philip Meagher said there was no place on the external programme until September. He asked the court to finalise the matter as the accused was anxious to take up work.

For refusing to give a sample, the accused was fined €200 and disqualified from driving for four years. The two dangerous driving charges were taken into consideration and driving disqualifications of two years and four years imposed. For no insurance, he was disqualified for two years. The charge of no licence was taken into consideration.

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