Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Sleeping driver Ian Thorburn killed man in layby in Fife

A lorry driver who fell asleep at the wheel caused his vehicle to hit and kill a motorist who was standing in a Fife layby, a court has heard.

Ian Thorburn, 53, failed to stop after his truck hit Robert MacLellan, 65, on the A92 near Cowdenbeath.

Thorburn, of Kirknewton, West Lothian, plead guilty to causing death by dangerous driving and failing to stop at an accident scene on 19 May 2014.

He also admitted failing to report the incident in a reasonable time frame.

Failed to brake

The High Court in Edinburgh heard on Tuesday how motorists who had witnessed the incident gave chase to Thorburn.

The court heard he failed to brake or give the witnesses any impression he was going to pull over.

Mr MacLellan, from Tain, had earlier stopped in the layby. The court heard Leonide McGuinness was driving with passenger Andrew Clark when they witnessed the incident.

Mr Prentice added: "Andew Clark saw the lorry drift to the left towards the lay by, in his words 'from sitting centrally within the lane towards the lay by moving approximately three feet to the near side for no apparent reason.

"Leonide McGuinness was then aware of a loud thud and saw the lorry judder as it collided with something and they both saw debris including a person's boot being thrown onto the carriage way.

"The aftermath of the collision was filmed on CCTV and shows the deceased landing on the layby.

Defence solicitor advocate Gordon Martin told the court his client regretted his actions and had pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity.

The court heard Thorburn had no previous convictions. Lady Wise deferred sentence for background reports.

She also remanded him in custody for preparation of the reports.

Thorburn will be sentenced at the High Court in Edinburgh on 20 November 2014.

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