$5000 reparation ordered for doctor smash

A 45-year-old North New Brighton man must pay reparations of $5000 for running a red light in Dunedin and smashing into a car transporting four doctors.

In the Christchurch District Court, Philip Daryl McPherson was disqualified from driving for 10 months on four charges of careless driving causing injury.

Two of the doctors were knocked unconscious, and three received serious concussion in the crash on the corner of Stuart and London Streets, Dunedin, on Christmas Day.

One doctor had to have surgery to remove glass fragments from his arm and had injured knee ligaments. Another had a broken left cheek bone and a gash inside her mouth which needed stitches. A fourth doctor had two broken ribs.

Defence counsel Richard Peters said the reparation figure submitted by the driver and owner of the car, which was spun into a traffic pole in the accident, was excessive, and McPherson had limited means.

Judge Stephen O’Driscoll said all the doctors suffered physical harm, financial loss, and emotional harm.

McPherson was willing to attend a restorative justice meeting with the doctors, but they didn’t want to do so, as they had put this event behind them and wanted to get on with their lives, he said.

Victims frequently had losses and costs which could not be quantified, which they often have to bear the brunt of, Judge O’Driscoll said.

McPherson was remorseful, and it was difficult for a court to quantify emotional harm and emotional loss for victims.

He sentenced McPherson to pay $1000 reparation to the car owner, and an emotional harm payment to all four doctors of $1000 each, and the disqualification from driving.

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