Drink-driver smashes car into wall causing pal to need plastic surgery

A drink-driver who crashed his car in to a wall resulting in his passenger needing plastic surgery has been spared a jail sentence.

Nathan McLeod, 20, was one-and-a-half times the legal limit when he ploughed his car in to the wall, resulting in his passenger being left with significant injuries and his car extensively damaged.

Paisley Sheriff Court heard that McLeod, of Kilbarchan, was driving his white Mazda with his friend Callum Black when he lost control and crashed. Mr Black suffered injuries to his eyelids, ribs and lung.

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Procurator fiscal Ms McDonald told the court: “Around 8.30pm on July 23, 2020 McLeod was driving the car with his friend Callum Black in the passenger seat.

“He was driving westbound on Bridge of Weir Road, in Brookefield, and lost control, came off the road and collided with a wall of a private dwelling.

“A witness who was in their own car was heading in the opposite direction and noticed that McLeod was driving at high speed.

“The witness saw the crash and went back to the crash site.

“He then saw McLeod get out the car, leaving his passenger inside the car.

“The witness could hear the passenger shouting ‘Run, run.’

“McLeod made off, running towards Linwood, and the witness took a picture of McLeod.”

The court heard that a second witness had also attended at the incident and saw Mr Black stuck inside the passenger seat of the badly-damaged car.

Ms McDonald added: “A second witness could see that Mr Black was unable to get out of the car and had a head injury.

“Police attended and saw the car with extensive damage and the passenger with head injuries.

“A search was commenced to trace McLeod and Mr Black was taken to the Royal Alexandra Hospital, in Paisley, for treatment.

“McLeod was traced sitting in a car park when he provided a breath specimen.

“Due to failing the roadside breath test, he was taken to Paisley Police office for a further test which showed he had 36mg of alcohol in his breath – the legal limit being 22mg.”

Court was told how McLeod was later taken to hospital with chest injuries and Mr Black sustained two lacerations to his upper eyelids, two fractured ribs, a punctured lung and fluid in his lungs.

As a result of his injuries, Mr Black will require plastic surgery for his eye.

McLeod’s defence agent said that he accepts full responsibility for his actions, telling the court: “McLeod was driving too fast and was under the influence of alcohol, there is no excuse and he fully accepts that.

“At the time of the crash, he was heading out of a restricted area on to a national speed limit road.

“He accepts he was driving too fast and takes responsibility for his passengers injuries.

“His family want to help him and are supporting him in any way that they can. And he recognises that they have both been lucky and it could have been a lot worse.

“His mother is present in court today and I am asking for an alternative to custody.”

Sheriff Brian Mohan said: “This has all the hallmarks of somebody who thinks they know best.

“You could have killed yourself and your pal.

“The car was left in a terrible state and your friend was lucky to be alive.

“This has all the looks of somebody who is out of control.

“You are literally at a crossroads here, I can either send you that way to jail or send you off with an alternative punishment.

“This was a serious matter and I am convinced you know that.

“I do need to give this serious consideration.”

After reading relevant reports, Sheriff Mohan imposed 240 hours of unpaid work and disqualified McLeod from driving for two years.

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Daily Record – Paisley