AN 18-year-old Banbridge motorist pleaded guilty to driving without due care and attention when his case was heard in court last week.
Banbridge Magistrates’ Court, sitting in Newry, heard that Jonathan Lyttle of Ballinaskeagh Road, Ballinaskeagh, had been driving his father’s Renault Clio on the Grovehill Road, Banbridge, when he lost control, moved across the road and collided with another vehicle.
Lyttle’s defence solicitor told the court that his client, an R plate driver, was deeply apologetic.
“I have explained that his licence is very much in jeopardy. He was coming down a hill and unfortunately lost control and collided with another vehicle,” he said.
He added that Lyttle was fully insured and that his father had lost use of the vehicle for three weeks after the collision.
“It was very difficult for the family,” he said.
He explained that his client is a full-time apprentice electrician for a Banbridge farm and that a licence was “absolutely essential” for his job.
He added that Lyttle also attends a part-time course in Portadown Tech and asked that the court be lenient.
“He has never been in court before. It is a daunting experience for this young man and his family I can tell you,” he said.
When Resident Magistrate Mr Paul Copeland asked what Lyttle’s father thought of what had happened the solicitor replied: “He is deeply concerned and troubled. He assures me this young man will not be before this court again. It has taken a toll on them. He deeply regrets his actions and I don’t think I will see this young man again.”
Addressing the defendant Mr Copeland said: “If you appear in court over the next few years, you will be off the road instantly. You came perilously close to losing your licence here today but I will stay my hand.”
He fined Lyttle 200 and ordered that five penalty points be endorsed on his licence.