The Wirral Globe reports that today Mr McQuinn was cleared by a jury in Liverpool Crown Court of causing the death of David Noble by careless driving in Spital at 0950 on 20th October 2010. Mr Noble was riding a bicycle at the time of the collision. There was no suggestion that Mr Noble was in any way riding improperly when he was run down by a car driven by Mr McQuinn. Mr McQuinn explained that the accident was unavoidable because the sun was in his eyes. The jury took 17 minutes to return a not guilty verdict.
Last week the South Wales Evening Post reported that Mr Shapland was cleared by a jury in Swansea Crown Court of causing the death by careless driving of Olin Poulson after a collision on the A40 near Carmathen on 3rd September 2010. A tachograph and telephone records revealed that Mr Shapland had been driving his articulated lorry at 52 mph (speed limit for lorries 40 mph) and had been on his hands free 'phone at the time of the collision. He explained that Mr Poulson had turned right across his path as he was overtaking.
I am not privy to all the evidence in either case. Clearly, in my view, each driver had a case to answer and it was only right that the prosecutions were brought. The jury verdicts do not affect that and no prosecuting authority should expect a 100% success rate in the Crown Court. It is an improvement over some cases in the past where prosecutions have not been brought and the drivers have never been called to explain their actions to a Court.