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Redcastle man who avoided prison sentence has failed to do community service

Letterkenny Courthouse.

Letterkenny Courthouse.

A CIRCUIT court judge has heard a man sentenced to community service in lieu of a four-year prison sentence for dangerous driving causing death has failed to complete his hours over three years after his sentencing.

Daniel Coyle of Clar, Redcastle was sentenced to 240 hours community service and disqualified from driving for 20 years by Judge John D. O’Hagan on July 10, 2012 relating to a road traffic accident at Clar on April 19, 2009. Coyle’s cousin, Hugh Donegan (32), died at the scene when the Red BMW Coyle was driving smashed through a fence and overturned at 10am.

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At this morning’s sitting of Letterkenny Circuit Court, Judge O’Hagan heard that the Probation Service had ‘bent over backwards’ to accommodate Coyle who is confined to a wheelchair since the accident.

Senior Counsel for the State, Ms Patricia McLaughlin BL told the court the Probation Service was at its wits’ end trying to provide suitable community service for Coyle.
Probation Officer, Ms Yvonne Lennox told the court that Coyle, who is now residing in Derry, had only completed 20 hours since his sentencing.

Judge O’Hagan said he got the impression that Coyle was ‘avoiding the situation’. “He has to make up his mind; he is not co-operating with the Probation Service. He was deemed fit for community service when the sentence was imposed.

The judge said he would give Coyle one more chance, but stressed that he disturbed by his attitude towards the sentence. “He can either produce a medical report stating that he his unfit for any form of community service, or he can find a suitable placement with the probation officers. I am not impressed by his misbehaviour and he is going to have to change his attitude.” Judge O’Hagan adjourned the case to January 26.

For the full report on this case and extensive coverage from ‘Around The Courts’, don’t miss the Donegal News print edition on Friday.

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