Fairground driver threatened to cut rival’s throat before collision, court hears

A fairground van driver threatened to cut a rival’s throat before causing a collision and fleeing the scene, the Galway District Court heard this week.

Alan McCormack with an address at 6 Lispauchaun, Ennis, Clare, also failed to appear last Monday for dangerous driving and threatening and abusive behaviour at Cregboy, Claregalway, on April 1, 2008.

According to Garda evidence the injured party, Mr Owen Curry, reported a collision at Cregboy. When gardai arrived at the scene they could see debris all over the road and they took a statement from Mr Curry. Gardai made contact with McCormack regarding the incident and advised him to make a statement but he declined. After further attempts at contact McCormack failed to keep several appointments with gardai. The court then heard that both parties are involved in the “carnival trade” and there had been an element of competition.

Giving evidence under oath, Mr Curry confirmed that he is involved in the fairground business and that he had been driving his truck from Sligo to Galway when the road became very busy going through Loughgeorge.

“I looked in my mirror and saw him [McCormack] making signs that he was going to cut my throat,” said Mr Curry. McCormack then pulled his dark blue transit van in front of his truck and stopped suddenly. Mr Curry was forced to break hard but his truck went straight into the back of McCormack’s van. When Mr Curry got out of his vehicle the defendant became abusive and made more threats. McCormack then checked his van and drove off.

Responding to questions posed by Inspector Mick Coppinger Mr Curry said that because he was carrying fairground equipment and going through a busy junction he was travelling at a maximum 35mph.

Judge Fahy convicted and fined McCormack €1,000 with one month to pay and disqualified him from driving for two years. He was also ordered to pay €80 witness expences.


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