Judge criticises delay in Ballycastle car death court case

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A judge has criticised a delay in the case of a County Antrim man charged with causing the death of two young people in an Easter weekend car smash.

Deputy District Judge Sean O’Hare was speaking at Coleraine Magistrates Court on Monday where 21-year-old Shane Kinney was joined in the dock by his parents.

Kevin Kinney (51) and his wife Sharon (49) are charged with offences connected to the case.

A solicitor for Shane Kinney said the case has been ongoing for some time and it is a very serious matter and he was keen for an update.

He said the accused are on bail and his client in particular is under strict conditions.

A prosecutor said a forensics report has been delayed until the end of December and another report regarding vehicle car paint due in November has not yet been received by the investigating officer.

Judge O’Hare asked why it was taking so long and said there should not be a delay of six weeks.

The prosecutor said phones are being triaged and one phone with thousands of images on it is still being worked on.

He said a file is expected in January but it might not be the full file.

The Kinneys were released on continuing bail to appear back at court in January.

The family trio was at Coleraine Court in relation to a fatal road traffic collision in which two young men were killed and several others injured earlier this year.

Shane Kinney of Drones Road, Armoy, is charged with causing death by dangerous driving and other charges following a crash at Cushendall Road, Ballycastle, on April 6.

His mother Sharon and father Kevin are charged with perverting the course of justice in connection with the horror road smash their son has been accused of causing.

Two people - Johnny Black (19) from Ballycastle and Robin Wilson (26) from Armoy - died and a number of other young people were injured following a collision near Ballycastle on Easter Monday this year.

Ballycastle teenager Clodagh Arbuckle was left with serious injuries but is now out of hospital.

When the case was last in court in November a prosecutor said there were 55 tape transcripts along with forensic reports including information on an airbag.

In September a court was told by a prosecutor a forensic report was still outstanding in relation to paint and a vehicle movements report was also due.

At a previous court a police officer said at 3.41am on Monday April 6 this year police received a report of a fatal road traffic collision at Cushendall Road, Ballycastle , involving two vehicles at the scene - a Volkswagen Bora in which Robin Wilson was going towards Ballycastle and a Peugeot car containing Johnny Black going towards Ballyvoy .

The officer said police investigations led them to believe a third vehicle was involved, a blue Volkswagen Golf, which was identified as belonging to Shane Kinney through its registration number.

He said the suspect presented himself voluntarily at Coleraine Police Station on April 8 and afterwards presented his car for inspection and no damage was found.

The officer said police believed parts were stolen from a car dismantlers yard in Armoy which were fitted on the vehicle and forensics later matched the parts on Kinney’s car to a car in the yard.

He said witnesses placed Kinney at the scene of the accident with damage to his car but that he then left the scene.

The officer said another witness saw Kinney and one of the deceased, Robin Wilson, at Hunter’s Bar in Ballyvoy .

At the time of that court sitting, he said “community tension is very high in the Ballycastle area” and said police had concern for the safety of Kinney.

The policeman said witnesses alleged Kinney’s parents recovered the car on the evening of April 6.