The prosecution has accepted a defendant’s plea to the lesser charge of causing death by careless driving, a court heard today.
Last month, Laura Adair appeared at Belfast Crown Court on a charge arising from the death of female pedestrian Kelly Ann Sherlock.
The 36-year-old, whose address was given on court papers as “known to police”, was charged with causing the death of Kelly Ann Sherlock, who was in her forties, by driving a car dangerously on the Shore Road in north Belfast on November 8, 2019.
When asked how she pleaded, Ms Adair replied, “Not guilty. But I plead guilty to careless driving causing death.”
Prosecution barrister David McNeill asked the court for some time to consult with the victim’s family and those who instructed him in the Public Prosecution Service.
At the same court today, Mr McNeill told Judge Geoffrey Miller QC: “I have consulted with the family of the deceased and those who instruct me. The plea that has been entered is acceptable to the prosecution.”
Judge Miller ordered a pre-sentence report to be prepared on Ms Adair by the Probation Service.
Mr McNeill said he would furnish the court with victim impact statements on behalf of the Sherlock family ahead of sentencing.
Defence counsel John Kearney QC said his instructing solicitor was making efforts to enlist the assistance of a consultant psychiatrist to examine his client.
Asked by the judge if Ms Adair had any mental health issues, Mr Kearney replied: “It relates to the impact upon her from this accident.”
Judge Miller said the case would be reviewed at the end of August before a plea and sentence hearing would take place in the new court term.