Drink-driver, 16, crashed stolen car into elderly couple's bedroom

Liam Donaldson Aberdeen Sheriff Court
Guilty: Liam Donaldson was banned from driving.Newsline

A teenage drink driver who left a pensioner injured after he crashed into the bedroom of her home has been banned from driving.

Liam Donaldson - who was 16 at the time - stole a family friend's car after a night drinking at a party with friends.

Donldson then ploughed the Skoda Fabia straight through the wall of John and Catherine Gordon's house in Balnagask Road, Torry, Aberdeen.

Mrs Gordon, 77, woke up to find herself trapped under rubble and the bonnet of the car right beside her bed. Her 80-year-old husband escaped injury.

Depute fiscal Anne MacDonald said the elderly couple were "shocked" to find the car had careered into their sheltered housing home in the early hours of May 12 last year.

She said: "It was obviously a great shock to them, especially at that sort of elderly age, lying in bed, completely unaware of what Mr Donaldson was doing outside in the street.

"They suddenly realised that the wall of their house was collapsing round about them.

“Mrs Gordon, in particular, was trapped under the rubble as she was lying in the bed.”

Donaldson, now 17, previously admitted stealing a car and driving it without a licence or insurance when he appeared at Aberdeen Sheriff Court.

He also pled guilty to injuring Mrs Gordon by driving dangerously while under the influence of alcohol.

On Thursday he was banned from driving for three years.

The court heard that the car's owner had gone on holiday and left the vehicle with her 32-year-old daughter.

Donaldson, of Aberdeen, had called their family home and asked if he could be picked up from a party with friends at about 3am.

The woman's daughter expected the youths to spend the night in her living room after she collected them but she woke up a few hours after going to bed, at about 6.30am, to find the car had vanished, along with the keys.

An estimated £34,500 of damage was caused to the Gordons' council house and the Skoda Fabia - worth about £7000 - was an insurance write-off.

Defence lawyer Iain McGregor said his client had accepted full responsibility for his actions.

Sheriff William Summers said it was "frankly astonishing" that no-one had been more seriously injured as a consequence of the teenager's actions.

He said he could see reasons not to serve the first offender with detention.

He placed him under an 18-month supervision order and ordered him to carry out a total of 260 hours of unpaid work as a direct alternative to custody.

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