Drink-driver ‘recalls nothing’ of incident that ended in friend’s death
A drink-driver remembered nothing of a high-speed crash in which his friend died, a court has heard.
Stuart McCulloch, 28, told witnesses and the police that he had not been driving, and had no recollection between being in a nightclub and waking up in hospital.
It was only after officers explained that his friend, Michael Cameron, 23, had been found dead in his seatbelt in the passenger seat that McCulloch accepted he must have been behind the wheel at the time of the accident.
McCulloch, of Halkirk, Caithness, admitted causing the death of Mr Cameron, of Thurso, Caithness, on the A9 near Spittal, Caithness, on 26 February last year, by driving carelessly, under the influence of alcohol, and while the holder of only a provisional licence. He will be sentenced in August.
The High Court in Edinburgh heard that the car, a Vauxhall Astra, belonged to Mr Cameron. In the early hours of the morning, it struck a wall and McCulloch was found lying injured about 100 feet away. He had a collapsed lung and multiple rib fractures. He had an alcohol count of 102, the legal limit being 80. Investigators said the car had been travelling “at speed” but an exact speed could not be established.
McCulloch told police he did not remember events after being in a club, and did not recall being in the car or whether he drove it.
“At the end of the interview, he accepted that if the deceased was found in the passenger seat with his seatbelt on, then he (McCulloch) must have been in the driver’s seat,” said the advocate-depute, Richard Goddard.
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