Judge praises family of Kerry road traffic victim for their remarkable sympathy

A judge has praised the family of a Kerry road traffic victim for their remarkable sympathy.

Judge Tom O’Donnell was speaking at the sentencing hearing of Colin Flanagan of Unit C Apartments, Market Yard, Newcastle West, who had pleaded guilty to careless driving causing death at Dromin, Listowel.

79-year-old John Harman, a retired teacher, died following the road traffic accident which occurred on the 15th October, 2016.

Tralee Circuit Court heard that the victim was crossing the road in Dromin, Listowel, when he was struck by the accused’s car.

Mr Flanagan had said in garda interviews that he had seen Mr Harman, however, he’d expected him to stay in the safe ghost island in the middle of the road.

The court heard there was bright sunlight shining into the pedestrian’s eyes.

Defence barrister Mark Nicolas said his client had visited the victim in hospital and was even welcomed to the subsequent wake by the family.

The Harman family handed a note to the court, asking for the accused not to be given a prison sentence.

Judge Tom O’Donnell noted there were no aggravating circumstances, and he complimented the deceased’s family on their sympathetic, Christian view.

He subsequently imposed a suspended six-month sentence for the careless driving charge, and a €500 fine for no car insurance.