Glasgow & West Scotland

Dangerous driver Paul Stewart jailed over Robert McPike death

Paul Stewart
Image caption The court heard that Stewart had bought the car four days before the crash

A driver described by a judge as a "boy racer" has been jailed for six years after being convicted of causing the death of a man by dangerous driving.

Paul Stewart, 22, overtook a car on a blind bend on the B743 Prestwick to Strathaven road on 11 February 2012.

His Renault Clio narrowly avoided hitting a bus then spun out of control and hit a van driven by Robert McPike.

The 52-year-old, from Tarbolton, later died in hospital. Stewart was also banned from driving for 10 years.

The High Court in Glasgow heard that Stewart, from Mossblown, Ayr, had only been driving for two years when the fatal crash happened.

Jailing him, temporary judge Norman Ritchie QC told Stewart: "You were driving a ludicrously powerful motor car.

"Your driving was bad, it was dangerous and you persisted in that bad driving.

"Your age, the type of car and manner of driving made something of the stereotype of the boy racer."

The court previously heard that self-employed joiner Mr McPike, who was married with four children, was on his way to price a job for a customer when his work van was hit by Stewart's car.

The court heard that Stewart, who was trapped in his car, was screaming "I'm dying, I'm dying."

He also said: "Oh what have I done. Have I...killed him."

Eyewitness Lisanne Graham, a company director, who was driving in front of Stewart's car said she was intimidated by the way he was driving so close to her.

She added: "He shouldn't have taken the corner like that."

Brakes claim

Stewart denied causing death by dangerous driving, but was found guilty after a trial.

He did not give evidence, but his defence counsel Gavin Anderson, told the jury that the sporty Clio, which his client had bought four days earlier had faulty brakes and a faulty shock absorber and this may have contributed to the accident.

The court heard that Stewart, who worked at a recycling plant, was badly injured in the crash and had to undergo an operation on his leg.

Mr Anderson said Stewart lost his job at the recycling plant which involved manual labour, as a result of the injuries he received in the crash.

Mr Anderson said: "Mr Stewart is devastated by the fact he is responsible for the death of another person. He is struggling to cope with events and has been having counselling."

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