A retired accountant is to face trial accused of causing the death of a pensioner friend in a fatal smash.
Iain Mortimer, 72, formerly linked to a string of property and investment companies, is said to have failed to keep an eye on the road ahead – crashing his E-class Mercedes into an articulated lorry parked in a lay-by beside the A9 dual carriageway in Perthshire.
It is alleged that the black Mercedes then ricocheted across the road, hitting a Vauxhall Astra.
Mortimer’s front-seat passenger, Mervyn Bowden, of Kirkhill, a 72-year-old widower and great-grandfather, died at the scene of the accident north of Dunblane.
Both men were worshippers at Kirkhill Parish Church, where Mortimer used to edit the church newsletter.
At Stirling Sheriff Court yesterday lawyers for Mortimer wrote tendering his plea of not guilty to causing Mr Bowden’s death by careless driving.
Sheriff Wyllie Robertson set trial for July 8, with a preceding procedural hearing on June 25.
The single charge against Mortimer, of Beauly, alleges that, on the dual carriageway between Perth and Stirling near the junction for Upper Whitestone Farm, he caused Mr Bowden’s death by driving his Mercedes without due care and attention or reasonable consideration for other persons using the road.
It alleges he “failed to maintain observation of the carriageway ahead, failed to observe a heavy goods vehicle, then a stationary vehicle parked in a layby, and failed to maintain control” of his Mercedes, causing it to collide with the rear of the parked lorry and to be “projected across the carriageway”, striking the Astra, then being driven by a Charisse Zameer.
It is alleged all three vehicles, including the lorry, were damaged and Mr Bowden was “so severely injured that he died”.
The incident, on the southbound side of the dual-carriageway trunk route, occurred just before 1pm on June 12th last year (2018).
Trauma teams, paramedics, firemen from nearby Auchterarder, and an air ambulance, scrambled to the scene, and the southbound carriageway was closed for several hours in the aftermath of the fatality.
According to Companies House, Mortimer was company secretary to a total of five investment or property firms before resigning from all his appointments in September 2009.