Drove through a police checkpoint

A disqualified driver who drove on the wrong side of the road and drove through a police checkpoint without stopping, was sentenced at last week’s Banbridge Magistrates Court.

A pre-sentence report had been ordered for Christopher Scott McGreevy from Summerhill, Banbridge and District Judge Mr Copeland banned him for 18 months and imposed total fines of £500.

McGreevy was charged with dangerous driving, driving whilst disqualified, no insurance and failing to stop for police. A PPS Prosecutor told last week’s court how at 2.10am on 17 November last, police were at Bridge Street in the town when they observed McGreevy driving a Peugeot.

They used flashing lights to stop him, but McGreevy drove around the police vehicle and gained speed as he drove down Rathfriland Street on the wrong side of the road.

He went over the roundabout without giving way and headed onto the Rathfriland Road.

Police officers on foot patrol outside the Belmont Hotel signalled for him to stop but he through through the checkpoint. Police called at the home of the last registered owner and he said he had loaned the car to his sister’s boyfriend who was Christopher McGreevy.

Checks showed that McGreevy was banned for six months on 16 February at Lisburn Court.

He was arrested and interviewed during which time he admitted driving whilst disqualified and having no insurance but denied dangerous driving and said he didn’t see police.

He was shown CCTV footage and admitted all charges.

The court heard there was a large number of pedestrians and members of the public in the area at the time.

Solicitor Mr Woods said his client was fully aware of the dim view the court would take.

“He is from a good upbringing and an industrious young man who has held down full time employment since he left school.

“He was going to get cigarettes and nappies from a 24 hour garage.

District Judge Mr Paul Copeland spoke directly to McGreevy saying, “I don’t accept for one minute that you were out and about on an urgent domestic task

You were out and about and knew fine well you shouldn’t have been driving.

“Don’t think for one minute that this court doesn’t have a significant perception of what you were at that night.”

However, Mr Copeland said he was prepared to give McGreevy credit for his plea, working record and the fact he wanted to put this behind him.