Garda helicopter couldn't find car that crashed off Kilcullen motorway

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Garda helicopter couldn't find car that crashed off Kilcullen motorway

Naas Courthouse

A car was so covered in undergrowth after it crashed and left the motorway near Kilcullen that the Garda helicopter failed to locate it.

The driver of the car Francis Lynch, whose address was given as 102 Brown Street, Carlow, was prosecuted at Naas District Court today  for offences following the accident, which happened on November 1, 2016.

The 52 year old was sentenced to consecutive prison terms of 6 months for drug driving and dangerous driving as well as being banned from driving for a total of six years.

Garda Ronan Mannion told the court he went to the scene of the accident on the M9 and found a car facing in the wrong direction and added “but I had no second car.”

He was told a second vehicle was involved and two people were seen running on the motorway but there was no sign of the second car.

He said he later found two people, including the defendant on the road, but was unable to find the car that night. He added the defendant was “under the influence of something” and the following day he found the 00 registered car concealed in dense bushes. He said it appeared the defendant had taken a prescribed drug.

Gda. Mannon said it appears that the defendant’s car struck  the back of another car on the motorway.

“You’d need a binoculars to see it; it’s a case of spot the car,” commented Judge Des Zaidan, who was shown pictures of the car, which was extensively damaged, where it was found down a forty foot bank.

The court heard that the defendant has 30 previous convictions, the last of which was in 2010 for careless driving.

Solicitor David Powderly said the defendant is a recovering heroin addict. He said he is on a heroin treatment programme prison and wishes to continue with this treatment.

Explaining his relative lack of injuries, the defendant told the court he thought God was looking after him. “Jesus was taking care of me,” he told Judge Zaidan. The court also heard the defendant's partner has a drug problem and she was a passenger in the vehicle.

Mr. Lynch said he had done carpentry work some years ago but “got into a bit of trouble" and went to prison.