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Tomintoul crash left bikers with multiple injuries

By Ali Morrison

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A pair of motor cyclists touring the Highlands en route to the North Coast 500 were badly injured when their Harley Davidson was in collision with another biker near Tomintoul.

The incident occurred on June 15, 2022 on the A939, one mile east of Dirdhu and two miles west of the Bridge of Brown.

The rider of the American vehicle, 58 year old former train driver Christopher Falconer from Banbury in Oxfordshire suffered multiple injuries and fractures and his partner, Victoria King, also sustained fractures to her knee and face.

Inverness Sheriff Court.
Inverness Sheriff Court.

The other biker, 37 year old Graham Mould of Harbour Road, Fisherrow, Musselburgh denies driving carelessly by entering the opposing carriageway on a bend whereby the couple were seriously injured.

The trial is being prosecuted before Sheriff Gordon Fleetwood as the collision happened just eight days before new legislation was introduced to make a new offence of causing serious injury by careless driving.

The trial would then have been held before a jury and the court's sentencing powers would have been much greater.

Mr Falconer is now wheelchair bound and cannot work.

He told the court he couldn't remember anything about the collision or the weeks afterwards. He said he suffered daily pain.

"I sustained a compound fracture of my leg, my knee was smashed, my hip was broken, also my wrist and I had three jaw fractures.

"I suffered nerve damage to my shoulder and back, I can't walk or use my right hand side and the whack on my head has left me with double vision.

"I was put in a medically induced coma in hospital where I had a stroke." Mr Falconer went on.

Defence counsel, Ian Duguid KC asked Mr Falconer if he could have strayed over the carriageway, was too close to the central white line or cut the corner before the front of the two motor bikes met?

Mr Falconer denied this, saying: "I am a very good rider. I don't remember the crash. I am guessing. But I wouldn't have done that."

Ms King also denied her partner cut the corner but she couldn't say how close the bike and its paniers were to the central reservation.

She said: "I can say that we were on our own side of the carriageway. I didn't realise another bike was involved. I got up from the verge and I was in complete shock. My main focus was whether Chris would survive or not."

The trial has been adjourned until May 22 when fiscal depute Sharon Ralph will call a police collision investigator and then an expert witness as will the defence who have both been given permission to sit in the court listening to the evidence.

Sheriff Fleetwood commented: "So I will have to decide which expert witness I believe."

View our fact sheet on court reporting here

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