A Banff man has been cleared of hitting an 87-year-old woman with his car and then fleeing the scene.
Malcolm Chalmers’ not guilty plea was accepted by the Crown – however he did admit to crashing his vehicle into another car days earlier and refusing to stop.
The 49-year-old appeared in Banff Sheriff Court and pled guilty to careless driving on Banff Bridge on November 19 2022 and a charge of leaving the accident.
It had been alleged that Chalmers had also ploughed into the pensioner on November 24 while she was crossing the High Street and failed to stop or report the accident.
The extent of the woman’s injuries were not heard.
However just before he was due to stand trial on those charges the Crown announced it had accepted his not guilty pleas.
In relation to the charges where his guilty pleas were accepted, fiscal depute Peter Finnon told the court Chalmers had been driving his blue Ford Fusion on the A98 at Banff Bridge at around 4.45pm.
Mr Finnon explained that a family were stopped in the road to allow some larger vehicles to cross.
He said: “Whilst waiting for a bus to pass they felt a collision to the rear of their vehicle. They heard a loud bang and were shunted forward.
Family’s car rear-ended
The husband and wife, who were travelling with their two children in the back of the car, turned to look out the rear window and “observed Mr Chalmers behind them”.
The husband drove to the next layby expecting Chalmers to do the same, however, he carried on and did not stop.
The court heard the family then followed Chalmers until he stopped at West Kingswell Park, where they went to speak to him.
“He denied having collided with their car,” Mr Finnon said.
The damage to the family’s car amounted to £503.96 which included a new number plate and repairs to the bumper.
Several previous convictions
Chalmers defence agent Stuart Beveridge told the court his client had several previous serious driving convictions, having been “regularly caught” driving without a licence.
He said: “He has now passed his test in 2020 and has not been in front of the traffic authorities since then. He has a clean driving licence.”
Sheriff Robert McDonald said: “I would have taken a far lenient view had you bothered to stop.
“However, you chose to drive away knowing full well that you had a responsibility to give details and then when they caught up, you denied you had caused the accident.”
He gave Chalmers, of St Catherine Street, Banff, eight penalty points and fined him £515.