Drink driver banned from road killed gran in private hire crash

Dawid Zywicki already had 15 convictions for road traffic offences when he drove head-on into the vehicle in Glasgow's Haghill.

Glasgow drink driver banned from road killed grandmother after smashing into private hire taxi Getty Images

A drink driver who was banned from the road killed a much-loved grandmother as she returned from the theatre.

Dawid Zywicki already had 15 road traffic convictions when he got behind the wheel of his Ford Fiesta van on March 27, 2022.

The 28-year-old had been going at speed when he ended up crashing head on into a private hire taxi in which Margaret Pearson was a back seat passenger.

The 75-year-old never survived the collision on Todd Street in Glasgow’s Haghill.

A man fixing his tyre at the side of the road was also hit and left badly hurt.

Zywicki is now behind bars after he pleaded guilty to causing death and serious injury by dangerous driving.

Prosecutor Gavin Anderson KC went on to narrate at the High Court in Glasgow the tragic circumstances of the smash.

Ms Pearson had spent that evening with her friend at the city’s King’s Theatre.

The women then shared a taxi home – her friend was dropped off first leaving the pensioner in the back.

Zywicki – who had never held a full driving licence – was in the same area in his vehicle.

Mr Anderson told the court: “The taxi driver saw the headlights of the oncoming van.

“He later described Zywicki’s approach as ‘being fast, like motorway speed’.”

Zywicki – who was also wearing no seatbelt – had gone on to the opposite side of the road before ploughing into the black Mercedes.

This caused the taxi to then spin and hit Kevin O’Neill and his Ford Focus.

Mr O’Neill, 56, had been trying to repair a puncture in his motor at the time.

Witnesses rushed to help with Ms Pearson found unconscious.

Emergency crews arrived and took her to hospital. The pensioner had suffered bleeding around the brain and a spinal fracture.

Ms Pearson – a mum-of-five and gran-of-seven – never recovered and passed away on March 31.

Mr O’Neill needed corrective surgery for serious injuries to his left leg and was in hospital for five days.

The court heard Zywicki was found to have not less than 179mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood. The legal limit is 50mg.

Mr Anderson further explained Zywicki was also a disqualified driver at the time having been banned in July 2019.

He added: “He has never had a full driving licence. He has held a provisional licence.”

The court heard Zywicki already had two convictions for drink driving, two for getting behind the wheel while already banned, one for dangerous driving and another for careless.

He had a further five for having no insurance and a final four for driving without a proper licence.

Zywicki – a part-time painter and decorator – was remanded in custody by judge Lord Scott as sentencing was adjourned until next month in Lanark.

Ms Pearson’s heartbroken family released a statement via Digby Brown Solicitors after the hearing.

It read: “There is no amount of justice which would comfort us over the loss. She was such an important person in our lives.”

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