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Year in Jail for drunk driver after taxi man dies in crash
Examiner 11-10-2001 Michael Doyle

A Kildare man who killed a Dublin taxi driver in a car crash whilst over twice the legal drinking limit has received a 12-month jail sentence and been banned from driving for life by Judge Elizabeth Dunne.

Isaac Moriarty, 24, of Haggards, Carbury pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to dangerous driving causing the death of 52-year-old John Healy and to drink driving on October 21, 1999.

The late Mr Healy had been off work for two years and it was his first night back. Mrs Josephine Usher, one of the victim’s eight sisters, told prosecuting counsel, Mr Fergal Foley BL, the tragedy had devastated his family.

“The loss we have felt is indescribable. If anybody in our family had a problem they would go to John. We are still finding his death very hard to accept,” she said.

“My mother has been widowed for the last 25 years and John has always looked after her. She couldn’t face coming to court and I’m not sure she will survive this tragedy.”

Garda Kevin Keys told Mr Foley that Moriarty had driven up to Dublin to visit a friend in Phibsboro. During the day they went to drink in a pub before driving to another one.

Later that night both men got separated and left the pub at different times. Moriarty bean to walk back to the flat but couldn’t remember where it was. He went back to collect his car to drive back to the flat.

Mr Healy was stopped at traffic lights in his taxi at the junction of Dorset St and the North Circular Road at about 3am.

When the lights went green he slowly moved forward but Moriarty came from the opposite direction in his Toyota Corona and smashed into the side of his car, forcing it across the road and into traffic lights.

Gda Keys said it was impossible to tell how fast Moriarty was going but it was very excessive. There was extensive damage done to both cars.

Mr Healy was pronounced dead at the scene, while Moriarty was taken to the Mater Hospital. He was interviewed by gardaí who recalled his breath smelling of drink and him being unresponsive.

He agreed to give a blood sample that found he was over twice the legal limit. Gda Keys said Moriarty had at least 10 pints on the day.

Judge Dunne suspended the last six months of the sentence on condition Moriarty got treatment.£5,000.


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