July 17, 2013

A man who threw a bottle at pursuing Gardai smashing their windscreen and pulled out brakelights to avoid being followed has avoided been sent to jail.

Cathal Dunleavy was driving car in which Gibbons traveled.

Cathal Dunleavy was driving car in which Gibbons traveled.

Gary Gibbons was along with another man Cathal Dunleavy on October 18th when they were spotted by Gardai.

Dunleavy was driving Gibbons’ 1999 Opel Corsa car and took off when Gardai spotted them.

There were two young ladies in the car including Gibbons’ then 16 year old pregnant girlfriend.

Sgt Jim Collins told the court that a Garda patrol car fitted with video equipment took up the pursuit of the car as it traveled towards Kerrykeel.

At one point the car stopped and reversed into the pursuing Garda car before trying to take off again.

Gibbons also reached onto the rear of the car and disconnected the brakelights in a bid to throw Gardai off their trail.

He also threw a bottle of ‘Wicked’ at the Garda car and cracked the windscreen.

The men were eventually caught and arrested.

Gibbons, from Kerrykeel, faced charges of criminal damage, endangering traffic and permitting another to drive while uninsured.

Barrister for Gibbons, Mr Peter Nolan, said his client knew he was looking down the barrel of a prison sentence.

However, he said he thought it was a once-off and that there was some hope for his client but none at all for Dunleavy who has been imprisoned for his part in the incident.

Sentencing Gibbons, Judge John O’Hagan asked “What am I to do with the young people of Donegal who will not drive in a responsible way?”

He said he accepts that Gibbons has had a child since the incident and the probation report suggest he was unlikely to reoffend.

“The one thing I am going to do is to put you off the road,” he warned the accused.

He sentenced Gibbons to 18 months for both the criminal damage charge and the endangering traffic charge but replaced both sentences with 200 hours community service.

He took the other charge into consideration.

He also banned him from driving for eight years and warned him not to come before him or another other judge looking for his license back until that eight years is up.