Drunk man drove car 'like an arrow' into couple and killed grandmother

Martin Jolly was jailed for almost 11 years after killing Helen McCallum and injuring her husband in the 2019 crash.

Drunk driver drove car ‘like an arrow’ into couple and killed grandmother in Dumfries and Galloway Police Scotland

A drunk driver who killed a pensioner on holiday just months after getting his licence back has been jailed for almost 11 years.

Martin Jolly got behind the wheel of his Vauxhall Astra despite having downed beer during a trip to the beach with a friend.

The 27-year-old went too fast and lost control of the vehicle at a bend on the A710 near Barnbarroch, Dumfries and Galloway.

The car went “like an arrow” into another Astra driven by Ramsay McCallum, 83, in which his wife Helen, 82, was a passenger.

Mrs McCallum never survived the smash on May 23, 2019. Her devastated husband was also left hurt.

Jolly already had four previous convictions for careless driving.

He had latterly been hit with a 14-month ban from the road which expired on February 11, 2019 – just three months before the fatal collision.

Jolly was jailed for ten years and eight months at the High Court in Glasgow.

He had pleaded guilty in August to a charge of causing death and serious injury by dangerous driving.

Lord Clark told Jolly: “The information before me includes victim impact statements from Mr McCallum and other family members. 

“What they have said in their dignified and harrowing personal accounts explains the acutely distressing effect on the family.

“Helen McCallum was described as the lynchpin of a large and loving family.

“Her death from your totally unacceptable behaviour has caused irreparable damage and has had a devastating effect.”

On the day of the crime, Jolly had picked up a friend, stopped off to buy a 12-pack of Corona beer before heading to Sandyhills Beach in Dumfries and Galloway.

Prosecutor Chris Macintosh: “During the journey. he was driving at speeds between 80 to 90mph on roads with a 60mph limit.

“He was repeatedly looking at his passenger and reminded by her to keep his eyes on the road.”

The court heard they spent 90 minutes at the beach both drinking the beer.

The McCallums, of Kilmarnock, Ayrshire, had been driving to their daughter’s home in the village of Kippford in Kirkcudbrightshire where they were on holiday.

Jolly was travelling in the opposite direction – his passenger was “very uncomfortable” at the speed he was going at.

He went on to smack into a verge before losing control at a bend and eventually colliding with the couple’s car.

The advocate depute: “Mr McCallum described the oncoming vehicle as shooting across the road onto his side ‘like an arrow’.”

One witness believed the crash was so bad that everyone involved would be dead.

A 999 call was made and, despite attempts to save Mrs McCallum, she did not survive having suffered fatal chest and abdominal injuries.

Her husband had a wound to his arm while Jolly’s passenger had multiple fractures to her hand and wrist.

Jolly, of Newton Stewart, Dumfries and Galloway, also needed hospital treatment himself.

Police searched his car and discovered four bottles of Corona beer still there.

Tests revealed he had not less then 68mg per 100ml of alcohol in his blood. The legal limit is 50mg.

Jolly also had traces of the drug diazepam in his system.

He was also banned from driving for 14-and-a-half years.

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