Driver who fled scene of three-car crash and hid in derelict house is jailed
A banned driver who hid in a derelict farmhouse after fleeing the scene of a three-vehicle crash he caused has been given an eight-month jail sentence.
Sean Henry McKay (31), from Ballymena Road in Carnlough, was also handed a five-year driving ban.
After appearing at Ballymena Magistrates Court yesterday, he was released on his own bail of £750, pending an appeal.
A prosecutor told the hearing one of the victims suffered "potentially life-changing injuries" in the crash on the Carnlough Road in Broughshane on February 22.
The court heard McKay was driving on the wrong side of the road when he crashed into another vehicle. A third car then became caught up in the incident.
Despite a relative of his being injured in the crash, the defendant fled the scene.
Police later received a call from McKay's mother saying her son had caused the accident and was hiding in a derelict farmhouse.
When found, the barely conscious defendant was taken by ambulance to Antrim Area Hospital.
He later claimed during police interviews that he was not in the car at the time of the crash.
However, a prosecutor told the court that evidence found on an airbag showed McKay was the driver.
Defence barrister Stephen Law said a victim impact report produced for the case made for "bleak reading".
He added his client had panicked after the crash because he was on a suspended sentence for a similar incident and should not have been on the road.
McKay pleaded guilty to charges including dangerous driving, driving whilst disqualified, absence of insurance, failing to report an accident and failing to remain at the scene.
Mr Law said his client regretted his actions and wanted to say sorry to the victims.
"He knows fine well the damage he has caused to others and wishes to unreservedly apologise to all parties," added the lawyer.
The defendant is banned from for driving while he awaits a date for his appeal.