BREAKING NEWS - Lorry driver found not guilty

The Letterkenny man charged with dangerous driving causing the death of a three-year-old boy has been found not guilty.

The Letterkenny man charged with dangerous driving causing the death of a three-year-old boy has been found not guilty.

The jury of six men and a woman took less than an hour to find Alex McDaid not guilty of dangerous driving causing the death of Patrick McDonagh.

Mr. McDaid was the driver of a bin lorry which was involved in an incident at Ballymacool, Letterkenny on February 16th, 2010 in which Patrick McDonagh was killed.

The three-day trial heard that the incident happened when the reversing lorry struck the boy who was chasing a ball.

Mr. McDaid, of Bomany, Letterkenny, had denied the charge. He was fined 100 euro after admitting not having a valid driving licence at the time.

Counsel for Mr. McDaid, Christopher Meehan, said the incident has had a very serious effect on Mr. McDaid. He has not driven any type of vehicle since and has left his job. Mr. Meehan said Mr. McDaid lives with the incident every day.

Charging the jury at Letterkenny Circuit Court, Judge John O’Hagan told them they had the option of reducing the charge to careless driving. He said the case was a very emotional one which involved sorrow, outrage and sadness. Judge O’Hagan said the incident was a parent’s worst nightmare which had unfolded in front of Patrick’s father.

He said the jury must decide whether Mr. McDaid’s driving was dangerous, careless or that the incident was “just a freak accident that has tragic circumstances for everyone”.