Two Elgin City footballers have been jailed after admitting driving dangerously and causing an accident near Alves last year that led to a team-mate becoming ‘permanently disfigured’.
Ceiran McLean (23) was sentenced to be detained for one year while Darryl McHardy (18) received a nine-month custodial sentence after both had pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing.
The accident happened on September 12 last year when the pair where driving back to Elgin from an Under-21 match in Dingwall. The court heard how they were driving with two fellow footballers as passengers in each car at speeds of between 70mph and 80mph.
Their cars collided at the Coltfield Junction near Alves as McLean attempted to overtake McHardy, who was himself in the process of overtaking another vehicle travelling at the 60mph speed limit.
McLean’s car overturned while McHardy’s left the road and struck a tree. All six men were injured in the accident that left Chris Tucker, who was on trial at the Moray club, in a coma for 12 days. Mr Tucker suffered from a broken pelvis, two broken legs, swelling in the brain and a crushed lung.
Sentencing the pair Sheriff Susan Raeburn said: “When cars are driven in the manner that you were driving they are no longer convenient ways of getting from A to B – instead they become dangerous weapons.”
Both players have recently featured in Elgin City’s first team. Speaking in mitigation for McLean, solicitor Brent Lockie said: “A fellow young footballer will never play at that level again, and he (McLean) is full of guild about that – it has been a very hard life lesson for him.”
McHardy’s solicitor, Matthew O’Neil, said of his client – who had only passed his driving test weeks before the accident: “He has turned from a young head to a very mature 18-year-old. His stupid actions that day are not an indication of his true character.”