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Drink-driver who killed friend shifted blame onto victim

A drink-driver has been jailed after killing his friend in a car accident and then trying to lay blame on the victim.

A motorist who crashed his car whilst drunk tried to shift the blame onto the victim he killed. Mark Kane, 39, from Clelland, North Lanarkshire, had been driving erratically before he crashed his Golf GTI. In the accident, passenger Andrew Duffy was thrown from the vehicle, suffering fatal injuries.

A drink driver blamed his dead friend for the tragic accident.
A drink driver blamed his dead friend for the tragic accident.

Kane had been tailgating motorist Kenneth Goodbrand who was driving in front with his wife and two young children. Mr Goodbrand said that Kane had attempted to overtake him multiple times on a country road in Shotts, North Lanarkshire and was driving erratically.

Kane decided to overtake Goodbrand on a blind bend, but lost control, flipping the car onto its roof. Andrew Duffy, the passenger, was thrown from the vehicle and died from severe injuries. Goodbrand got out of his car to help, and spotted Kane sliding out of the driver’s window in order to free himself from the wrecked vehicle.

Goodbrand told the court that when he told Kane his passenger was dead, Kane showed no reaction at all. He added: “I asked him was he driving, but he said nothing. His expression was blank.” Goodbrand continued: “He then said something like ‘we will need to get our stories straight’ or ‘I will need to get my stories straight’”.

Goodbrand said that he could “smell the alcohol off him,” and added that Kane was staggering about, incoherent.

Despite the weight of evidence against him, Kane denied being behind the wheel that day. His lawyers lodged a special defence alleging Mr Duffy, the deceased, was driving that fatal day. However, the jury found Kane guilty after it emerged he had previously been banned from driving for three years in 2001 after failing to provide a breath specimen to police. 

Kane has been jailed for eight years and banned from driving for the next 10 years.

Do you think he should receive a bigger punishment? Let us know by posting in the comments below. 

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