Cy­clist loses leg af ter be­ing hit by car at 70mph

Scottish Daily Mail - - Life - By Alan Dow

a SPOrTS car driver was yes­ter­day found guilty of tear­ing off a cy­clist’s leg as he drove through a hous­ing es­tate at nearly 70mph. andy MacLeod was thrown around 200ft by the force of the im­pact when the high-­ per­for­mance Subaru Im­preza driven by Gra­ham Dou­glas, 29, ploughed into him.

as well as los­ing the limb, Mr MacLeod, 20, suf­fered a brain in­jury in the hor­rific ac­ci­dent on March 8, 2011, in Fort Wil­liam, In­ver­ness-­ shire. His l eg was found nearby as he lay un­con-scious, but doc­tors were un­able to reat­tach it.

Dou­glas, of Fort Wil­liam, de­nied driv­ing dan­ger­ously at 67mph through a 30mph area and crash­ing i nto Mr MacLeod, se­verely in­jur­ing and perma-nently dis­fig­ur­ing him. But a jury at the town’s sher­iff court took only 45 min­utes to find the fa­ther-­ of-­two guilty af­ter seven days of ev­i­dence.

Mr MacLeod, also of Fort Wil­liam, told the court he could re­mem­ber noth­ing of the night-­time ac­ci­dent, adding that even the few days lead­ing up to it were ‘a blank’.

It was two weeks be­fore he grad­u­ally be­came aware of his sur­round­ings in Glas­gow royal In­fir­mary where he had been taken for treat­ment.

Mr MacLeod, an ad­ven­ture tourism stu­dent, ar­rived in court on crutches and, wip­ing away a soli­tary tear, he told ju­rors: ‘The ac­ci­dent changed ev­ery­thing in my life. It has been tough. I lost a year at col­lege and my mum be­came my carer for a year.’

ac­ci­dent in­ves­ti­ga­tor PC Scott Lem-mon, 47, told the court that when he saw the im­pact dam­age to the Subaru – buck­led bon­net, smashed wind-screen and bent roof – he could hardly be­lieve Mr MacLeod was still alive.

Mr Lem­mon, who has in­ves­ti­gated 200 fa­tal and near-­fa­tal ac­ci­dents, said: ‘I have never seen a car so badly dam­aged by a vic­tim and he has sur­vived the im­pact.’

Dou­glas, a scaf­folder, told fis­cal ali-son Wylie he was driv­ing at 30mph when he hit Mr MacLeod. He said: ‘I thought I col­lided with a wheelie bin.’

De­fence QC Don­ald MacLeod said po­lice had es­ti­mated the car’s speed from what they said were tyre brake marks on the road, but the QC in­sisted they were not brake marks.

af­ter the ma­jor­ity guilty ver­dict, Sher­iff noel McPartlin de­ferred sen­tence for a back­ground report.

Out­side court and ac­com­pa­nied by his mother, Lewis-­born Mr MacLeod said: ‘I am pleased with the ver­dict, that the jury saw the true pic­ture.’

De­spite his in­juries, he has since climbed Ben ne­vis and was se­lected for the Olympic torch re­lay.

Andy MacLeod: Thrown 200ft

Found guilty: Gra­ham Dou­glas

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