A DETECTIVE Inspector said he was forced to ‘take evasive action’ to avoid colliding with a car which he said crossed the centre white line.
Inspector Detective Thomas Fitzmaurice told last week’s sitting of Belmullet District Court that a car came out of a wedding party line onto the other carriageway and was two abreast with another car. He claimed that the driver was looking over at another car and laughing and he had to take action to avoid a collision.
Charlie McDonagh of 55 Cois Abhainn, Turlough Road, Castlebar, denied the charge of dangerous driving but admitted that he had come across the white line. He claimed another member of the party had tried to overtake him on the inside and forced him out on the road.
His solicitor James Ward said his client was forced out onto the road and accepted breaking the rules but asked for the charge to be downgraded from dangerous to careless driving. He added that Mr McDonagh’s wife was pregnant with his fifth child and that he used the car to drive three of his children to and from school.
Judge Kevin Kilraine said he did not accept his explanation that he was forced out over the white line and convicted him of dangerous driving. However, he said that given his personal circumstances he would not disqualify him from driving but fined him €500.