The mother of a Letterkenny teenager killed in a hit and run incident says her dead daughter’s name has been cleared following legal action taken against a coroner.
Marie Hegarty was speaking to the Donegal’s People’s Press after a settlement was reached in the High Court action the family took against coroner John Cannon over comments he made at her daughter, Laura’s inquest in 2009.
A statement read in the High Court said the remarks made by Mr. Cannon do not form part of the verdict nor do they have any legal effect. In a letter sent to the family from the Chief State Solicitor’s office, the Coroner also apologised for the unintended distress caused. The letter stated Mr. Cannon had not intended to attribute any wrongdoing to Laura, who would have been 23 this Friday.
Marie said Mr. Cannon’s comments about Laura’s high blood-alcohol level on the night she died had added to the family’s distress. At the inquest the coroner said the death was another one attributable to alcohol and a road traffic accident.
“I had to do what I had to to clear my dead daughter’s name. My daughter had no hand or part in her own death. She is dead and she is not here to defend herself and we had to do this.”