Press Release

Thousands of cyclists join victims’ families to demand a proper sentence for driver who killed twice

Chris Peck's picture
Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version
This morning the Chief Executive of CTC - the national cycling charity - will hand a letter to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service in Edinburgh to register a formal appeal against what the charity has called a ‘scandalous’ sentence handed down on May 3rd to Gary McCourt.

Gordon Seabright will be accompanied by Mr Ian Fyfe, the widower of Audrey Fyfe and Ann Dalgity, the sister of Gary McCourt’s first victim George Dalgity.

An online campaign to ask for letters to support the appeal has now topped 3,200 emails sent directly to the Prosecutor Fiscal’s office.

McCourt was sentenced to 300 hours of community service and a 5 year driving ban for causing the death by careless driving of 75 year old Audrey Fyfe in Edinburgh in 2011.

Gordon Seabright met with Linda, one of Audrey Fyfe’s daughters, and her widower Ian yesterday. 

Mrs Fyfe was a popular member of CTC Scotland and her death and this sentence has caused revulsion not only in the cycling community but across Scotland.  She was the second person to have died because of McCourt's driving - the first, another cyclist, George Dalgity was killed in 1985.

Mrs Fyfe’s daughters Aileen Brown and Linda Hamilton approached CTC to help them in their campaign to achieve justice – which we view at the very least as a lifetime driving ban for McCourt. A letter is going to all CTC members in Scotland asking them to write to the Lord Advocate in support of an appeal.

Rhia Weston, CTC’s Road Justice Campaigner , expressed concern that the Sheriff referred to Audrey Fyfe having not been wearing a helmet, and that this appears to have influenced his sentencing decision.  Rhia said “It is debateable whether or not a helmet might have made a difference, but more importantly it is legally irrelevant. The Sheriff’s role was to sentence McCourt for the seriousness of a motoring crime which cost a cyclist her life. Given McCourt's previous conviction, he should have received at least a lifetime driving ban."

Mrs Fyfe’s other daughter Aileen, who now lives in the south west of England said she has not only lost a mother but a best friend.  “A holiday with mum was a lovely habit we enjoyed. There can't be many mother and daughter friendships close enough to want to spend holidays together for 45 years.”

CTC has also learnt from a neighbour of the late George Dalgity that, at the time McCourt killed Dalgity in 1985, he only had a provisional licence and was driving unsupervised and without licence plates. He pleaded guilty to the offences of driving without insurance, driving without a full licence and without supervision or licence plates, and for leaving the scene without exchanging details or reporting the collision to the police, and failing to produce his licence afterwards.  He pleaded not guilty to causing Dalgity’s death by reckless driving – but was nonetheless found guilty.  For the ‘causing death by reckless driving’ offence, he received a 1-year custodial sentence. The details were obtained via a Freedom of Information Act request.

Contact Information: 

CTC Press Office
Email: publicity@ctc.org.uk
Telephone: 0844-736-8453

Notes to Editors: 

CTC’s letter to the Lord Advocate can be viewed at
http://www.ctc.org.uk/news/demand-proper-sentence-for-driver-who-killed-...

Share this article

Archive

  • Patron: Her Majesty The Queen
  • President: Jon Snow
  • Chief Executive: Paul Tuohy
  • Cyclists' Touring Club (CTC): A company limited by guarantee, registered in England no.25185. Registered as a charity in England and Wales No 1147607 and in Scotland No SC042541

 

Terms and Conditions