Driver admits causing death of Cookstown man taking vintage tractor to charity run
A Cookstown man has admitted causing the death of a popular vintage vehicle enthusiast who was driving his classic tractor to a charity run when he was involved in a fatal road traffic collision in 2015.
The guilty plea came yesterday just as Ivan Davison (61) was to stand trial, and after a lesser charge was accepted by the prosecution.
Davison, of Dunmore Park, was scheduled to go on trial at Dungannon Crown Court, but his defence counsel asked for him to be re-arraigned.
When the charge of causing the death of Robert George Victor Wylie by dangerous driving was put to him, Davison replied: "Not guilty to dangerous driving, but guilty to careless driving."
A barrister appearing on behalf of the prosecution confirmed the guilty plea to the lesser charge was acceptable.
Aged in his 60s, Mr Wylie -known as Victor - was a married father and grandfather from Cookstown.
He died when the tractor he was driving was in collision with a Honda 4x4 driven by Davison, on the Moneymore-bound A29 dual carriageway at around 9.30am on July 17, 2015.
Relatives of the deceased were present at the hearing yesterday.
Davison, dressed in a dark grey suit and shirt with a grey and black tie, was released on bail while pre-sentence reports and victim impact statements are prepared.
Judge Stephen Fowler QC ordered him to appear back in court next month.
Mr Wylie, a retired businessman, was a long-time member of the Mid Ulster Vintage Vehicle Club and on the day in question had been making his way to the starting line for their annual tractor run, from Moneymore to Ballyclare and back.
The event was to last two days with proceeds going to NI Children's Hospice, but was cancelled when the news of Mr Wylie's death reached the organisers.