Motorist admits causing pedestrian's death in Durham by careless driving

The Northern Echo: Dean Laing Dean Laing

A MOTORIST was warned he is facing a prison sentence after admitting responsibility for the “hit-and-run” death of a pedestrian.

Pantelimon Ovidiu Iordache was at the wheel of a Vauxhall Astra car which was in collision with Dean Laing as he crossed the road at the top of Claypath, near the Gilesgate roundabout, Durham, in the early hours of Saturday, November 10, last year.

Mr Laing, 37, was said to have been making his way home on foot to nearby Gilesgate after a night out in Durham, when the accident took place, at about 2.30am.

He was found lying between two parked cars to the side of the road and was pronounced dead from head injuries.

The silver-coloured car involved in the accident left the scene, but the man suspected of driving, Pantelimon Ovidiu Iordache, was arrested later over the course of that weekend.

Iordache, also 37, of South View, Bearpark, near Durham, was charged with causing Mr Laing’s death by dangerous driving and failing to stop after an accident.

When he appeared at Durham Crown Court  today (Monday January 14) a further count of causing Mr Laing’s death by careless driving was put to Iordache.

He pleaded ‘guilty’ and also admitted the additional charge of failing to stop after an accident.

But he pleaded ‘not guilty’ to the original charge of causing death by dangerous driving.

David Wilkinson, prosecuting, told the court: “Following an extensive review of the case these are pleas which the Crown accepts.”

David Callan, for Iordache, asked for preparation of Probation Service background reports on his client, who is a Romanian, prior to sentence.

Agreeing to the request, Judge Christopher Prince, asked Mr Callan: “The defendant is aware he will face a custodial sentence?”

Mr Callan replied: “Yes, it has been made clear.”

Iordache was remanded in custody and will be sentenced on February 11.

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