DRIVER PLEADS GUILTY TO CAUSING DEATH OF MUCH-LOVED SCHOOLTEACHER

January 31, 2012

A MAN pleaded guilty today to causing the death by dangerous driving of a much-loved schoolteacher.

Damien McGeehan, 20, originally from Loughanure, but with an address at 1 New Cottage, Annagry, entered his guilty plea at Letterkenny Circuit Court today following the death in August 2010 of 51-year-old Marie O’Donnell.

The victim died in the crash as she drove home from a friend’s 25th wedding anniversary celebrations with her husband John.

Mr O’Donnell was in court today to hear McGeehan enter his guilty plea.

Judge John O’Hagan told McGeehan that he was adjourning a decision on his sentence until he had received relevant reports.

On being told by counsel for the DPP Patricia McLaughlin that Mr O’Donnell was in court, Judge O’Hagan said: “It must be considerable relief to you that someone has put their hands up and taken responsibility for this.”

McGeehan, who was living in Milford at the time of the crash, was remanded on continuing bail.

Mr and Mrs O’Donnell were on their way home from the wedding anniversary party of friends Henry and Kathleen Callaghan on August 11, 2010, when they were hit by blue Honda Civic driven by McGeehan.

The incident happened on the back road between Milford and Kilmacrennan. The mother of two died and her husband was seriously injured in the smash.

Mrs O’Donnell, from Knockbrack, Portsalon, was a teacher at Drumfad National School in Kerrykeel.

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