2 years later: Driver in horrific Agricola accident freed

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Danion Welcome and Ciara Benjamin

More than two years after a horrific accident at Agricola, Greater Georgetown which claimed the life of seven-year-old Ciara Benjamin, the driver of the truck that was involved in the accident was today set free after a no-case submission was upheld.

Danion Welcome was represented by Attorney-at-Law Dexter Todd during the trial before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Court. The Chief Magistrate upheld the no-case submission after the Prosecution failed to produce sufficient evidence.

In September of 2019, the 39-year-old Welcome appeared before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan and pleaded not guilty to the charge which detailed that on June 1, 2019, at Agricola Public Road, Georgetown, he drove motor lorry GWW 962 in a manner dangerous to the public causing the death of Ciara Benjamin.

During his arraignment, Welcome was represented by Attorney-at-Law James Bond, who asked for his client to be released on reasonable and if bail is granted, he will ensure that Welcome adheres to the conditions attached.

In addition, the lawyer informed the court that his client is unable to work since the ordeal, due to the injuries he received by the hands of residents of the Agricola community, who beat him mercilessly.

Bond had told the court that his client had to seek medical attention abroad for his injuries, after being advised by a local doctor.

It was reported that on the day in question, the child was attempting to cross the road with her aunt, Samantha Barry, at about 16:45h in the vicinity of the Independence Arch at Agricola.

During that time, the truck was heading to Georgetown when he allegedly swerved to avoid hitting a vehicle and ended up in the path of the pedestrians.

Upon impact, the woman was flung some distance away while the truck remained fixed on the median with the child pinned underneath. A light pole was unearthed from the impact and collapsed on the roadway.

Hundreds of people flocked the roadway and streets to witness the aftermath of the tragic incident. With the truck lodged in the middle of the roadway, police officers made efforts to clear the streets to allow for the body to be removed.

About one hour later, a forklift and crane were used to lift the vehicle and remove the child’s remains. Her body was completely severed in two. Several months after, the driver was charged and granted bail in the sum of $500,000.