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Solicitor says man who caused accident which left woman with broken leg fell asleep at the wheel

Morning collision on Northway happened after defendant completed first night shift as joiner

A Laurelvale man who left a woman with a broken femur and other injuries after a car accident will have to wait until next month to learn his fate.

Court heard that it was “inferred” that the 53-year-0ld had fallen asleep at the wheel after working a night shift.

Thomas Hollywood pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily injury by careless driving at Craigavon Magistrates’ Court on Friday.

Court heard that on July 1, at around 8.30am, police were called to a two-vehicle collision on the Northway, Portadown.

The injured party stated she was struck by the defendant when his car which was travelling in the opposite direction swerved over the white lines.

Court heard the injured party was left with a fractured femur amongst other injuries which had a recovery time of around a year.

When interviewed, Hollywood told police that he had been driving and that he had been working overnight.

District Judge Bernie Kelly stated: “The difficulty is the sentencing guidelines. The charge itself is the issue. It carries disqualification and up to six months in prison.”

Defence barrister Conor Lunny said: “He knows this girl, her mother works with his wife and he went to school with her father.”

He explained: “This was his first night shift as a joiner. He can’t recall what happened but the inference is that he fell asleep at the wheel.”

District Judge Kelly ordered that a pre-sentence report was required in the case, with defendant to return on March 22.

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