Sentencing date delayed for woman who has admitted causing the deaths of two girls in Blackhall horror smash
A woman who has admitted two charges of causing death by dangerous driving will await her fate for another six weeks after her sentencing date was pushed back.
Mary Michelle Stokes, of Cairo Street in Hendon, was warned to expect a custodial sentence when she appeared before Durham Crown Court last month after admitting the charges at her first hearing before a judge.
The 23-year-old was driving a Peugeot 206 when it was involved in a crash with a van on the A1086 Coast Road between Blackhall Colliery and Horden on the afternoon of Wednesday, September 2, last year.
She has also pleaded guilty to two charges of causing serious injury by dangerous driving, with an indication at her last court hearing that she would also admit a further two charges of the same offence after four others were hurt in the collision.
She had been due to be sentenced today, Monday, June 14, but it will now be heard on Friday, July 30, at the same court.
On the last occasion, the case had been adjourned for reports to be prepared for the Honorary Recorder of Durham, Judge James Adkin, who gave Stokes an interim driving ban.
He told her: “You must be under no illusion, this is a custodial case, you are going to prison, it’s just a question of how long that sentence will be, which is to be determined on June 14.”
A total of seven people were taken to hospital following the collision, with a large number of tributes left to the girls following news they had lost their lives in the collision.
It is understood the girls, who were from Derry in Northern Ireland, had been on their way to a birthday celebration.
Inquests into their deaths have been opened by the County Durham Coroner’s Office, with the hearings on hold following a request from the Crown Prosecution Service.
The next mention hearing is due to be heard on Monday, July 5, at Redhills in Durham.