A 70-year-old woman in the Republic of Ireland has been found guilty of dangerous parking, following a multi-vehicle collision that claimed the life of an elderly man.
However, Mary Meade of Lissard, Galbally, Co Limerick, was acquitted of the more serious charge of reckless endangerment following a three-day trial at Limerick Circuit Court.
Meade had denied committing the offences at Ballyfroota, Ballylanders, Co Limerick on November 26, 2010.
During the trial the jury was told that 80-year-old Jim Corbett suffered fatal injuries when another vehicle collided with Meade's car parked outside his home. The court heard Mr Corbett was standing in the open door of Meade's car at the time of the crash.
The widowed mother of four had been visiting the Corbett family who were described in court as "life-long friends".
It was the prosecution case that Meade had parked her black Opel Astra outside Mr Corbett's home, facing the traffic in a dangerous position with the headlights on. It was alleged that Meade had acted recklessly by disregarding a warning that the lights from her car were blinding oncoming motorists.
Mr Corbett, a father of eight, was fatally injured after a Toyota 4X4 crashed into Meade's car. He was standing in the door of Meade's Astra car when the accident happened. A Honda Civic was also involved in the collision and crashed into the back of the 4x4.
Judge Caroll Moran told the jury he agreed with their verdict in what he said was a very sad case involving a freak accident.
He recorded the conviction for dangerous parking but said there was no question of sending Meade to prison because of her good character.
Judge Moran also said there was no question of imposing a fine as this might be seen as putting a value on someone's life "which would be obscene".
He described the case as very sad, particularly for the dead man's family, but said he was relieved to hear that all parties were still on good terms. The dangerous parking offence attracts five penalty points.
Source Irish Independent