Bearsden Boxing Day crash driver has been spared jail

A driver who caused the death of a woman pedestrian after mounting a pavement in a Range Rover was yesterday (Wednesday) spared a jail sentence.
By Clare GrantBy Clare Grant
By Clare Grant

Janette Henry's vehicle struck Eleanor Ballantyne and relatives as they made their way to a restaurant in Bearsden, in East Dunbartonshire, on Boxing Day in 2019.

Henry (68) of Kilmardinny Avenue, Bearsden, failed to keep proper observations and failed to negotiate a bend before driving across the opposing carriageway and onto the pavement.

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She collided with a wall at Manse Road and failed to stop before the victim of the fatal crash was struck and six others injured, three of them seriously. Her vehicle then hit a parked car.

Henry originally denied causing the death of the 60-year-old community worker, from Dundee, by driving dangerously, but was convicted of the lesser offence of causing death by careless driving following a trial.

The victim died at Glasgow's Queen Elizabeth hospital on January 2 in 2020 following the collision.

A judge at the High Court in Edinburgh ordered that Henry carry out 100 hours unpaid work under a community payback order following the offence and banned her from driving for 12 months. Her licence was endorsed.

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Lord Stuart said: "The collision and its consequences have been devastating for many.

He added that the author of a background report on Henry noted she presented as someone who was sincerely ashamed and remorseful after having caused death and injury.

The judge told Henry: "My conclusion is that the collision appears to have been caused by a momentary loss of attention on your part."

Defence counsel Thomas Ross KC said: "Since the incident she has not driven and does not expect to drive in future. It seems to be the case that before December 26 in 2019 she had been driving for around 46 years without incident."

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Henry was originally convicted of also causing serious injury to three others by careless driving during the incident but that was overturned by appeal judges as that offence did not exist at the time of the collision.

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