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Last Updated: Thursday, 27 January, 2005, 13:39 GMT
Boy sentenced for 'battery' death
Christopher McCaffrey
The teenager admitted killing Christopher McCaffrey
A 16-year-old boy who admitted killing a van driver by dropping a car battery off a road bridge has been sentenced to four years' detention.

Christopher McCaffrey, 33, was driving along the New Ferry bypass in Wirral, Merseyside, when the battery smashed through his windscreen in May 2004.

He died at the scene after the car he was driving flipped over onto its roof.

The judge said the teenager's crime was "particularly grave" at the hearing at Liverpool Crown Court on Thursday.

It was an act of mindless wanton and reckless hooliganism
David Aubrey, QC
The youth, who is from Rock Ferry but cannot be named for legal reasons, pleaded guilty to manslaughter.

The court was told he has learning difficulties and attention deficit hyperactive disorder.

Mr McCaffrey, of Moreton, was driving a Mercedes van which he had borrowed from a friend to help him move house.

David Aubrey, QC, prosecuting, told Liverpool Crown Court that "he was looking forward to getting his new place."

'Cover up'

"He was never able to do so," he said.

The van swerved across the road and hit a barrier, before it flipped over onto its roof and rolled across both lanes.

"It was an act of mindless wanton and reckless hooliganism and vandalism which had fatal and tragic consequences," Mr Aubrey said.

The teenager was arrested on the day of the accident and repeatedly lied saying he had seen two youths dropping the battery off the bridge.

"The defendant was seeking to cover up the enormity of what he had done," said Mr Aubrey.

Neil Flewitt, QC, defending the teenager, said he is "deeply ashamed and regrets what happened."

"He was a child with difficulties and limitations and not a fully functioning adult with a clear understanding of the possible consequences of his actions."

Teenager admits 'battery' killing
04 Jan 05 |  Merseyside
Boy remanded in van crash murder
02 Jun 04 |  Merseyside
Boy held over death of van driver
01 Jun 04 |  Merseyside

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