A motorist banned from driving swapped places with his wife when a member of An Garda Síochána approached their car.
Andrew Cash said he was not in the driver’s seat to begin with and his wife Mary Cash said she could not have swapped places with him because she was more than eight months pregnant.
However, Detective Garda Colin Dowling testified at Cork District Court that he saw the husband and wife swapping places in the front of the car as he approached them.
Judge Marian O’Leary said after hearing both sides in the contested case, “Garda Dowling saw Mr Cash driving the car. He gave direct evidence to this effect and he saw Mary Cash in the passenger seat. I find Andrew Cash guilty of driving with no insurance.”
The judge then asked if the accused had any previous convictions. Inspector James O’Donovan said Andrew Cash had 37 previous convictions and that at the time of this incident in 2018 he was disqualified from driving for a period of ten years.
That disqualification was imposed on him at the circuit court in Wexford on charges of driving without insurance and dangerous driving.
Judge O’Leary said that in the present case she would impose a community service order of 120 hours instead of a four-month prison sentence on Andrew Cash. Eddie Burke solicitor urged Judge O’Leary to strike out a charge against Mary Cash, stating that the prosecution “already have one scalp.” The judge acceded to that application in respect of Mary Cash.
29-year-old Andrew Cash of Kilbarry Cottage, Old Mallow Road, Cork, was seen driving the 17-registered car on March 4 2018 at Dublin Street, Cork.
Det. Garda Dowling said that as he approached he could clearly see Andrew Cash getting out of the driver’s seat into the passenger seat as Mary Cash sat into the driver’s seat.
Questioned about this, Andrew Cash insisted, “She was heavily pregnant. It did not happen. I was not driving. He (Det. Garda Dowling) said, ‘produce your licence and insurance’ (at a garda station). I said, ‘No’, because I was not driving. My wife was driving the car.”
Mary Cash said it would have to be a matter of life and death for her to change places as described when she was heavily pregnant, and she did not do so.
She added, “I would never be uncooperative with a member of the garda. I would respect the law.”