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Trial of A66 trucker accused of causing death by dangerous driving is re-fixed

Rhys Gardiner

THE trial of a young trucker accused of causing the death of a grandfather by dangerous driving on the A66 near Appleby has been re-fixed, and will now take place in the new year.

Rhys Gardiner, 24, faces one charge which arises out of a collision involving two lorries between Kirkby Thore and Crackenthorpe at around 5-40am on Tuesday, 3rd April, 2018.

This charge alleges that he caused the death of Timothy Harkness by driving a Mercedes Actros HGV dangerously.

Timothy Harkness

Mr Harkness, who was aged 72 and from Carlisle, was driving one of the vehicles and suffered fatal injuries.

Gardiner, of Old Hall Road, near Bentley, Doncaster, pleaded not guilty to the charge during a hearing at Carlisle Crown Court in August.

His trial in front of a jury was listed to take place this week. However, this was postponed due to a lack of court time.

During a short hearing today (WED), it was announced that the trial is now due to start on 19th February. Gardiner was not present in court for the hearing, in front of Judge Nicholas Barker.

It is estimated the trial will last two days. David Wales, for Gardiner, said during today’s hearing: “The very simple issue in this case is the standard of driving; whether it falls far below or simply below the standard required of a careful and competent driver.”

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