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Epileptic lorry driver guilty of murder

AN epileptic who had a fit at the wheel of a New York dustbin lorry and crashed into a British couple was found guilty of murder.

Jackie Timmins, 47, and Andrew Hardie, 48, of Yeovil, Somerset, died instantly when they were hit by the lorry driven by Auvryn Scarlett.

Scarlett, 54, had stopped taking drugs to control his epilepsy and failed to tell his employer about the condition, the court heard.

The jury at the Manhattan Supreme Court yesterday rejected the lesser charge of manslaughter, finding Scarlett guilty of two counts of murder in the second degree and one count of assault in the first degree relating to a third pedestrian who survived.

Scarlett was driving the truck when it mounted a pavement near Madison Square Garden in February 2008 as the couple enjoyed a romantic city break.

Among those in court to hear the verdict were Timmins’s teenage daughter Nikita and Hardie’s daughter Jodie, 20, both of whom gave evidence on Monday.

Yesterday the court was shown CCTV footage of the moment the lorry careered into the couple. The daughters and other family members left court as jurors were shown the video.

Scarlett’s defence lawyer, Michael Biniakewitz said his client would appeal.

Deputy district attorney Christopher Ryan said family members of Timmins and Hardie were happy with the verdict. He said: “The family are very, very satisfied with the result.”

Sentencing was adjourned to October 15 and Scarlett was remanded in custody.


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