Tuesday, February 28, 2023

Isabel Hayes

A young man who led gardaí on a high speed car chase eight years ago – nearly colliding with them a number of times – has been sentenced to two and a half years in jail.

Dylan Reddington’s sentence will commence on July 31st, when he is finished his current stay in residential rehab, Judge Martin Nolan ruled on Tuesday.

Reddington (27) of Cherry Orchard Grove, Ballyfermot, Dublin, was 19-years-old when he led gardaí on a high speed pursuit in the early hours of February 27th, 2015. He pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to two counts of endangerment.

Reddington has 54 previous convictions, including for dangerous driving causing serious harm, and has spent much of his adult life in prison, the court heard. Other previous convictions include endangerment, dangerous driving, possession of firearms and drug offences.

Sergeant Ciaran Wynne told Derek Cooney BL, prosecuting, that he was called to the scene around 2am on the night in question, where Reddington was driving the car at high speed around the Clondalkin area.

A number of garda cars and the garda helicopter got involved in the pursuit, during which Reddington drove on the wrong aide of the road, nearly collided with gardaí and forced their patrol cars to go up on the footpath a number of times.

The car eventually came to a stop in a cul-de-sac and Reddington fled the scene. Two passengers in the car – both teenage boys – were arrested. Reddington was charged for this offence in 2018. He took a trial date, which was adjourned four times, before he eventually pleaded guilty in December last year.

Keith Spencer BL, defending, said his client was in custody up until November last year and that he made the decision to turn his life around. His brother died tragically while in custody, the court heard, and Reddington decided he needed to grapple with his drug addiction.

He has been in residential rehab since shortly after his release from custody, which he is not allowed to leave, the court heard. Mr Spencer said this is the first time Reddington, who had a troubled youth and upbringing, has ever engaged in rehab and it is his first time being drug-free in years.

A Probation Services report reduced his risk of re-offending from high to moderate as a result of his efforts, the court heard.

Sentencing Reddington, Judge Martin Nolan said he engaged in reckless driving and behaved in a “reprehensible way”. He noted Reddington has a number of serious convictions, including dangerous driving causing serious harm. “But that didn’t stop him driving in that way on the night,” the judge noted.

He accepted Reddington has taken steps to reform himself and is required to stay in residential rehab for a number of months if he is to complete the programme.

The judge handed down a sentence of two and a half years and ordered it to start on July 31st to allow Reddington to finish rehab.

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