'Did the lady have a beard?': Longford case reaches US

Judge strikes out speeding charge

Longford Leader

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A woman whose car was detected having broken the speed limit on a busy regional road in Longford despite not being at the wheel at the time, had her case struck out at last week’s District Court sitting.

Michelle Baxter, 102 College Park, Longford was charged with speeding at the R198 at Aughedegnan on April 13 2017.

The case had previously come before the court last November when it emerged she had in fact nominated her step brother as the driver of the car on the day of the alleged offence.

Ms Baxter, at the time, had been residing in the United States.

The case drew plenty of interest on both sides of the Atlantic, Judge Hughes was told in light of the questioning which was directed to speed van operator Dean Smith by Ms Baxter’s solicitor, Frank Gearty.

He pressed Mr Smith about how Ms Baxter had been initially charged when it was clear she was not driving the car.
“Did the lady have a beard?” he asked.

At last week’s sitting Ms Baxter said the court case which was carried in the Longford Leader, had been sent out to her during her stay in the US.

Ms Baxter confirmed she had been working in the States and decided to come back in August due to homesickness.
“I will try and find a job and go back to college,” she said.

Mr Gearty, in continuing his mitigation, said Ms Baxter’s step brother was in fact driving her car on the date, adding that a “mess” had been made of the nomination process.

Judge Hughes accepted that version of events and struck out the charge.