Driver speeding at 80mph before killing motorist in crash

Victim's mother speaks of 'torment' at loss of 'lad with unforgettable smile'

Driver speeding at 80mph before killing motorist in crash Google 2020
Crash: Kyle Robertson died in a collision on the A835.

A speeding motorist who killed another driver in a crash in the Highlands has admitted causing death by dangerous driving.

Mikey Durdle, 23, was driving on the A835 road at up to 80mph when his white Audi S3 collided with a red Seat Leon being driven by Kyle Robertson.

Mr Robertson, 20, from Inverness died from head injuries following the crash near Garve on February 25 in 2018.

The two men were part of a group who had organised through social media to meet up at a local supermarket and drive out on the road.

Durdle moved onto the opposing carriageway and attempted to overtake two vehicles, including the car being driven by Mr Robertson.

Mr Robertson’s car crossed a railway line and hit a tree after the two cars collided.

Durdle, of Beauly, in Inverness-shire, admitted causing the death of Mr Robertson by driving dangerously and at excessive speed when he appeared at the High Court in Edinburgh.

He was warned he could face a substantial prison sentence.

In a statement released afterwards, the victim’s mother Lorraine Robertson said: “For the last 23 months we have been plagued with unanswered questions.

“It is tremendously cruel to have your child taken from you in such circumstances and to not have a clear understanding as to how, or why, is tormenting.

“It has tormented my thoughts ever since.”

She added: “Kyle was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis as a baby and his father and I treasured every day we had with him.

“We always thought we would get a chance to say goodbye to the lad with the unforgettable smile but that was sadly taken away from us.”

Advocate depute Alex Prentice QC said a group, including Durdle and Mr Robertson, had organised to meet up at a Tesco store in Dingwall to drive west to a viewpoint in the area of Achnasheen and Kinlochewe.   

The prosecutor said a woman who was travelling on the same road partially saw the collision that occurred in her rear view mirror.

Moira Taylor estimated that she was driving at about 30 mph when she was overtaken by a black car travelling at approximately 80 mph.

As that vehicle disappeared from view ahead she looked in her rear view mirror and saw two other cars approach from behind.

Mr Prentice said: “She noticed they were on the wrong side of the carriageway and the first one was red.”

She formed the view that the second one was driving closely behind the red car.

The prosecutor told the court: “She saw both vehicles leave the carriageway and disappear from her view.”

A 999 call was made after the crash and several passersby stopped to try and help.

The advocate depute said: “Mr Robertson was bleeding from his mouth and ears and was unconscious.”

Mr Prentice said that electronic data was later downloaded from Durdle’s Audi and sent to a specialist independent collision investigator.

He found that a crash pulse was detected which sent a signal at the time of impact and that in the moments following the Audi had a speed range of 84 to 76 mph.

Mr Prentice said: “It is likely that the speed immediately prior to impact would have been higher than this.”

The court heard that self-employed joiner Durdle  has three points on his driving licence.

Judge Lord Arthurson agreed to continue his bail, but warned it is likely that he will receive a substantial custodial sentence on his return to court.

Durdle’s case was continued to the High Court in Aberdeen in March when his defence team will give a plea in mitigation.