Ferry Road hit and run duo plead guilty over boy, 10, horror

TWO motorbike thieves who crashed into a 10-year-old boy on a pedestrian crossing in a hit and run horror today pleaded guilty.

Tuesday, 5th December 2017, 5:24 pm
Updated Tuesday, 12th December 2017, 5:27 am
Police on Ferry Road, Edinburgh, Scotland, after a 10-year-old boy was seriously injured in a hit and run incident after being struck by a motorbike outside Drylaw Police Station on Saturday. August 20, 2017. Police said a number of motorbikes were seen driving in the area at the time and they are appealing for witnesses. The child was struck as he used the pedestrian crossing near Drylaw Police Station at 18.35 on Saturday.

Connor Whalen, 20, and Marc Miller, 22, appeared at Edimburgh Sheriff Court and admitted injuring the schoolboy in Ferry Road on August 19.

Miller also pleaded guilty to driving in a dangerous manner and to having an involvement in the incident.

Both ran a red light before Whalen crashed into the lad on a pedestrian crossing.

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They now face being sentenced at a later date.

The boy, who cannot be named because he is a victim of crime, sustained serious injuries and was taken to the Royal Hospital for Sick Children for treatment.

He had to undergo surgery and remained in hospital for specialist treatment and counselling.

At the time, medics admitted it ws too soon to assess what the full impact on his life could be.

Tonight Police Scotland - who have been liaising with the family throughout - reveleaed he is back home, but still recovering from his injuries.

Detective Inspector Graham Grant of Corstorphine CID paid tribute to him, saying “Connor Whalen and Marc Miller’s actions resulted in a 10-year-old boy sustaining serious injuries which will take a significant period of time to overcome.

“This was a major investigation which has thankfully resulted in Whalen and Miller both submitting early pleas and sparing a child the trauma of a trial.

“I also want to pay tribute to the 10-year-old’s bravery throughout this process and wish him well as he continues his recovery.

“I hope this plea will bring a degree of closure to him and his family and allow them to move forward with their lives.”

The schooboy had been using a pedestrian crossing on the Saturday around 6.35pm when he was struck.

A stolen Triumph Daytona 650cc motorcyle was later found abandoned in the city’s West End as experienced CID officers were drafted in.

They began a city wide search for the culprits, as witnesses were quizzed and drivers asked to hand over dashcam footage and CCTV reviewed from cameras and businesses.

The arrests followed soon after.

Edinburgh has been plagued by motorbike thefts and reckless driving, something Police Scotland say they have been trying to crack down on.

Chief Inspector Stevie Sutherland, Local Area Commander for North West Edinburgh, said: “This incident had a profound impact on those within the North Edinburgh community who have been incredibly supportive not only to police, but to the young boy and his family.

“The criminality undertaken by Whalen and Miller and their associates is completely unacceptable and will not be tolerated.

“Tackling the theft of motorcycles, and associated criminality, is a priority for us and we continue to address the matter through Operation Soteria and the Stronger North partnership.”

And he appealed for the public to help.

He said: “If we are to fully tackle this issue we need the support of the local community. Anyone who is aware of motorcycle criminality in their area is asked to contact Police Scotland on 101, or anonymously through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”

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