Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 17 September 2014

Tragic end to young friends' night out in Portrush

Best friends Claire Wakelam (23) and Lisa McFerran (25), both from Carnifinton Park in Rasharkin, were hit seconds after they got out of a car on the Ballybogey Road outside Portrush after an argument broke out on December 16, 2006. They died instantly.

At an inquest into their deaths in 2008, the court heard Christopher Wilson had been on his mobile phone around the time of the smash and that the PSNI had recommended the taxi driver be charged with causing death by dangerous driving.

However the Public Prosecution Service ultimately decided he did not have a case to answer.

The inquest was told Ms Wakelam had been driving her fiance William O'Boyle, Ms McFerran, who was Mr O'Boyle's sister, and her boyfriend Jason O'Boyle (no relation) back from a night out in Portrush.

However an argument had broken out between them. This resulted in the car being stopped on the Ballybogey Road for William O'Boyle to "get some air".

In William O'Boyle's police statement he said because of child locks on the back doors, Ms Wakelam had got out of the red Ford Focus to let Ms McFerran out.

They were both standing in the oncoming lane of traffic when struck down.

Tragically, William O'Boyle died of causes unrelated to the crash two months later.

Mr Wilson said he had seen the car's lights but did not know it was stationary. He also said he never saw the women before he hit them but did his best to avoid the car.

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