Bray People - - FRONT PAGE -

A ROUND­WOOD man has been jailed for three and a half years af­ter he was con­victed of dan­ger­ous driv­ing caus­ing the death of tal­ented sports­man, Ge­orge John­son in 2007.

An­thony Leahy (38) of 1 The Tea Rooms, Main Street, Round­wood had pleaded not guilty to dan­ger­ous driv­ing caus­ing the death of Ge­orge John­son at Main Street, Round­wood on Novem­ber 4, 2007. How­ever, af­ter trial in De­cem­ber, last year, Leahy was found guilty of the charge by a jury of six men and six women.

Garda James O’Donoghue said Wil­liam Hawkins saw Mr. John­son of Vartry Heights leav­ing the Coach House at 9.30 p.m. on the evening of Novem­ber 4, 2007 and walk diago- nally across the road. He said he ‘ heard a bang and saw Ge­orge in the air’.

The court heard the point of im­pact was at the front num­ber plate and ev­i­dence in­di­cated Mr. John­son was walk­ing from the driver side of the car to the pas­sen­ger side when he was struck. The court heard Leahy, who was ar­rested at the scene, had a breath al­co­hol con­cen­tra­tion of 78mg of al­co­hol per 100ml of breath, more than twice the legal limit.

The court heard Leahy has a pre­vi­ous con­vic­tion for driv­ing with­out in­surance and driv­ing un­der the in­flu­ence, both of which were handed down af­ter this in­ci­dent. He was also con­victed of a num­ber of of­fences in the United King­dom in­clud­ing send­ing threat­en­ing text mes­sages to a for­mer part­ner.

Acting for Leahy Paul McDer­mott, SC, said Leahy and his fam­ily live in the vicin­ity of Vartry Heights. He said Leahy had been work­ing since he was 16 years old and have moved to Scot­land in 2003 and he re­mained in the United King­dom un­til 2007. He said Leahy only re­turned to Round­wood a short time be­fore the fa­tal ac­ci­dent.

Judge Michael O’Shea said ‘ there is no doubt that An­thony Leahy didn’t go out with the in­ten­tion of caus­ing death but dan­ger­ous driv­ing caus­ing death is one where in­ten­tion is not the ba­sic in­gre­di­ent - it’s fault and the de­gree of fault.’

He sen­tenced Leahy to five years im­pris­on­ment in re­spect of dan­ger­ous driv­ing caus­ing death and sus­pended the fi­nal 18 months on con­di­tion Leahy be of good be­hav­iour for three years af­ter his re­lease. He also put him off the road for ten years. He sen­tenced him to three months im­pris­on­ment for driv­ing with­out in­surance and put him off the road for four years in re­spect of drunken driv­ing. Leave to ap­peal was re­fused al­though Mr. McDer­mott said he had no in­struc­tions in re­spect of any ap­peal.

An­thony Leahy who was jailed for dan­ger­ous driv­ing caus­ing the death of Ge­orge John­son in 2007.

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