View Full Version : Cases from today's sheriff court

27-Feb-12, 16:43
Dangerous driver could have killed himself and passenger

A SHERIFF told a dangerous driver today, that his actions could have killed him and his young passenger.
Sheriff Andrew Berry added that the fact that Shane McPhee was also under the influence of drink when he lost control of his car, made matters “even worse, were that possible”.
McPhee, who escaped a custodial sentence, because he was a first offender, admitted previously, at Wick Sheriff Court having driven dangerously and with excess alcohol.
He was driving too fast for the weather conditions when his car left the road on the main A99 near Forse House, a residential home, and rolled a few times before coming to a rest. The 18-year-old sustained multiple injuries including a fracture skull and was transferred from a local hospital for treatment in Glasgow.
Senior fiscal depute, David Barclay, said it wasn’t clear what had caused McPhee, of Shelligoe Road, Lybster, to lose control and added that the accused had only “a faint recollection” of events after that. Police detected a smell of alcohol and tests revealed a blood-alcohol level of 119mgs-the legal limit is 80mgs.
The 13-year-old passenger, escaped serious injury, although he had not been wearing a seatbelt at the time of the accident, in the early hours of September 29, 2010. He had been advised by his mother, not to go with McPhee but had “sneaked” out of the family home.
Solicitor Sheena Mair said that McPhee felt “a great deal of remorse” because of the accident. He hoped to follow a career in the construction industry.
Stressing the seriousness of the accident, Sheriff Berry said: “It is quite clear that both you and your passenger could have suffered greater injury, or perhaps death” and added that, at the time, the accused was not old enough to drive legally and did not have the necessary skills to do so.
The sheriff, who saw reports, took into account, that McPhee was only 16 at the time and was a first offender and added: “It means I can deal with matters other than a custodial sentence.”
McPhee was put on probation for two years and ordered to carry out 150 hours unpaid community service. In addition he was banned from driving for three years and will also have to successfully complete an advanced driving course before sitting his driving test.

Two-times drinks driver

IN separate case a Halkirk man admitted driving while unfit through drink or drugs, twice within the same week.
Alan Gunn, of 2 Sinclair Square, will be sentenced on March 30 after the sheriff sees reports.
Gunn (30) volunteered the fact that he had been drinking when stopped by the police on the Thurso-Glengolly road on February 12. Tests confirmed that he was unfit to drive. Five days later, officers again had cause to stop the accused, this time in Smith Terrace, Thurso. He was unsteady, on his feet when he got out of his car and his speech was slurred.
Sentence was deferred for reports until March 30 when solicitor Neil Wilson will speak on behalf of the accused.

Drinks driver’s car impounded

A MEY man has become the third Caithness driver to have his car impounded for serious drinks driving offence.
Ian Mackay, of 6 Royal Crescent, Mey, was found to be more than three times the legal limit when stopped by police at Murkle on the main A836, on February 25. The 53-year-old told officers: “I am blazing”. Tests revealed a breath-alcohol of 111mgs, the legal limit is 35mgs.
Senior fiscal depute Mr Barclay successfully petitioned the court for the retention of the vehicle, pending an application to the court for its forfeiture. However, it was explained that the car belonged to Mackay’s former partner-the two had split up a month ago.
The case was continued for reports until March 26 when the question of forfeiture will be considered by the sheriff, under new powers for three times over, drinks drivers. Mackay, who pleaded guilty, is subject to an interim disqualification
Of the two similar cases to come before the court, previously, one man has his car forfeited the other was allowed to keep his vehicle.