Truck driver breaks down in tears as he's found guilty of causing the death of a 16-year-old boy

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Truck driver breaks down in tears as he's found guilty of causing the death of a 16-year-old boy he ran over while making an illegal turn

  • George Kyriakidis has been found guilty of dangerous driving causing death
  • He never saw the 16-year-old boy he ran over during peak-hour traffic in Sydney
  • Kyriakidis, 45, made an illegal turn and crossed onto the wrong side of the road

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A truck driver who never saw the 16-year-old boy he ran over during peak-hour traffic in southwest Sydney has been found guilty of dangerous driving causing death.

After more than a day of deliberations the jury handed down the unanimous verdict against George Kyriakidis in the Sydney Downing District Court on Thursday.

Kyriakidis appeared anxious throughout much of the trial, but sat motionless while the verdict was read out. After leaving the courtroom he immediately broke down in his partner's arms.

After more than a day of deliberations the jury handed down the unanimous verdict against George Kyriakidis in the Sydney Downing District Court on Thursday

Over the six-day trial the Crown argued Kyriakidis was 'driving in a manner dangerous to another person or persons,' when he made an illegal turn and crossed onto the wrong side of the road.

But his defence lawyer Brett Longville said at the point of tragic impact Kyriakidis would have had no reasonable expectation the boy would run out onto the road.

One August afternoon in 2018 the 45-year-old Panania man had slowed down his 11-tonne truck 'almost to a crawling pace', near a busy Bankstown street junction.

At the same time the teenager had run from a nature strip diagonally across lanes of traffic to get to his home in a street nearby.

Sarah Jennings, who was stopped in front of the truck, said she saw a boy 'rushing' in her rear-view mirror, before 'craning' his neck to look out for traffic driving the opposite way.

After she saw the teenager hit in the back she 'flinched' and looked away.

Truck driver breaks down in tears as he's found guilty of causing the death of a 16-year-old boy

Kyriakidis appeared anxious throughout much of the trial, but sat motionless while the verdict was read out.

After leaving the courtroom he immediately broke down in his partner's arms

Kyriakidis had been on a phone call via a hands-free device when he made the right-hand manoeuvre across a white painted island.

For most of a four-second period the teenager was running faster than the truck, and for a moment ran in front of the vehicle, Mr Longville said.

Kyriakidis was only alerted to the boy's presence when he heard and felt a 'boomp boomp boomp' before parking his truck and asking witnesses 'where did he come from?'

Graphic video footage played before the jury showed the boy's body falling beneath the truck before he was taken to Liverpool Hospital and pronounced dead.

'No one is suggesting for a moment that if he'd seen (the boy) he would have run over him... the case against him is he should have seen him,' crown prosecutor Mark Hay said.

'If he had taken reasonable precautions ...(the boy) would be alive and we would not be here today'.

Judge John Pickering said it was lucky to have a jury trial given the current worldwide health pandemic.

'These matters are always hard and emotional too because of the loss of human life.

I appreciate the stresses you would have been under for making this decision,' he told the jury.

Kyriakidis had pleaded not guilty to dangerous driving occasioning death, negligent driving and not keeping left of a median strip and motor vehicle.

Judge Pickering is due to hand down his sentence on November 6.

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