Ex-boxing champion jailed for head-on crash injuring mother

Sean Ward (27) was banned for driving at the time of the crash which caused woman ‘catastrophic’ injuries

Witnesses told gardaí Sean Ward overtook cars at high speed before crashing into the other car on the wrong side of the road. Photograph: Alan Betson

Witnesses told gardaí Sean Ward overtook cars at high speed before crashing into the other car on the wrong side of the road. Photograph: Alan Betson

 

A former all Ireland boxing champion who crashed head on into a car containing a woman and her nine month old son causing her “catastrophic” injuries, has been jailed for four years.

Dundalk Circuit Court heard that Sean Ward (27) from Old Bridge, Toberona, Dundalk who had over 40 previous convictions, was banned from driving at the time of the crash.

Witnesses told gardaí he overtook cars at high speed before crashing into the other car on the wrong side of the road at Carnbeg, Dundalk on the October 3rd 2015.

Ward admitted dangerous driving causing serious bodily harm to the woman (29) who, the court heard, had taken evasive action.

She suffered broken bones in her back, fractured ribs and the bones in both feet were “smashed and crushed”, according to Kevin Segrave prosecuting.

Her husband said she now lived with chronic pain and had serious injuries to her lower limbs and back and would need to learn to walk again.

He said they were unable to plan for more children as a result of her injuries and this “is devastating for us”.

The court heard Ward also received serious injuries and it was his second serious crash. The other one was in 2013 and he received serious head injuries in both.

His barrister Roddy O’Hanlon said his client was remorseful and he accepted responsibility for what happened. He accepted he should not have been behind the wheel of the car.

He said that in 2008 and 2009 Ward had been an all-Ireland boxing champion.

Passing sentence, Judge O’Shea said the effects of the crash were “catastrophic” for the woman and her husband, and her injuries were “shocking and horrific in the extreme.”

He said Ward should not have been driving and “if he had complied with the disqualification there would not have been a collision.”

He jailed him for six years for dangerous driving causing serious bodily harm with the last two years suspended and for five months for no insurance. He also disqualified him for ten years and six years respectively and endorsed his licence. All sentences are to run concurrently.