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Court told fear of disorder led to Armagh man not stopping at scene of collision

Defence said: 'Unfortunately a man had taken a seizure. There was a large crowd around him and my client feared it was something more sinister'

An Armagh man drove on after colliding with a parked vehicle did so as he feared there was disorder in the area.

The 59-year-old’s legal representative said there had been a crowd in the street who were attending to a male who had suffered a seizure.

Brian Nugent, of Tyross Gardens, pleaded guilty to failing to stop, failing to remain, failing to report and driving without due care or attention at the city’s Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.

Prosecution outlined that a statement by the injured party said that on August 26, at 10.30pm, she observed a red Mercedes collide with the nearside of her vehicle which had been parked outside her home on Folly Lane, Armagh.

The wing mirror of this vehicle hit her car damaging the passenger door and panel before driving off.

Police attended at the home of the defendant, the last registered owner of the offending vehicle.

Nugent was cautioned and during interview made full admissions to the offences.

He claimed he had slowed down, as a number of people were standing over a man on the footpath, but did not stop.

Defence counsel stated: “He is retired, he worked as a tiler and he was quite candid with police.

“Unfortunately on that evening a man had taken a seizure. There was a large crowd around him and my client had feared it was something more sinister.”

He continued: “He was distracted, he did not know what was going on and feared it may have been some sort of disorder.

“At first he wanted to stop but a friend who had been in the car advised him against this. It was very minor damage.”

District Judge Paul Copeland commented: “Your client will know in future that he must stop no matter how minor the damage.”

Nugent was handed five penalty points and was ordered to pay a fine of £200, along with the offender’s levy of £15, within 12 weeks.

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