Emotional teenager admits causing boy's crash death

A teenager fought back tears in a courtroom today as he admitted causing the death of a 10-year-old boy in a hit-and-run.

John Smith, 18, appeared at York Crown Court charged over the death of Sean Hamilton, who was hit by a Ford Transit van as he crossed Holgate Road in the city on October 3 last year.



The youngster was treated at the scene by paramedics and then taken to York District Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.



North Yorkshire Police said at the time that the occupants of the van stopped after the incident but then abandoned the vehicle and ran off.



In court today, Smith, wearing dark trousers, a black T-shirt and black hooded jacket, fought back sobs as he pleaded guilty to causing death by careless or inconsiderate driving.



His voice was barely audible as he spoke to enter guilty pleas to two further charges of failure to stop at the scene and failure to report the accident.



The teenager, of Lynwith Lane, Carlton, rested his head on the bench in front of him and looked visibly shaken as the judge spoke to him towards the end of the 10-minute hearing.



The Recorder of York, Judge Stephen Ashurst, said he could not promise he would not be handed a custodial sentence and warned it was in the court's power to jail him due to the seriousness of the offence.



He said granting conditional bail "carries no promise to the ultimate outcome of this case".



He added: "The fact that you've pleaded guilty is something that will be taken into account in your case."



The judge also imposed an interim disqualification from driving and set a sentence hearing for September 30.



Members of Sean's family were present in court but were too upset to speak to press after the hearing and said they would prepare a statement once Smith had been sentenced.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: Ed Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

He was meant to be Labour's biggest handicap - but has become almost an asset
General Election 2015: A guide to the smaller parties, from the the National Health Action Party to the Church of the Militant Elvis Party

On the margins

From Militant Elvis to Women's Equality: a guide to the underdogs standing in the election
Amr Darrag: Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister in exile still believes Egypt's military regime can be replaced with 'moderate' Islamic rule

'This is the battle of young Egypt for the future of our country'

Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister Amr Darrag still believes the opposition can rid Egypt of its military regime and replace it with 'moderate' Islamic rule, he tells Robert Fisk
Why patients must rely less on doctors: Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'

Why patients must rely less on doctors

Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'
Sarah Lucas is the perfect artist to represent Britain at the Venice Biennale

Flesh in Venice

Sarah Lucas has filled the British pavilion at the Venice Biennale with slinky cats and casts of her female friends' private parts. It makes you proud to be a woman, says Karen Wright
11 best anti-ageing day creams

11 best anti-ageing day creams

Slow down the ageing process with one of these high-performance, hardworking anti-agers
Juventus 2 Real Madrid 1: Five things we learnt, including Iker Casillas is past it and Carlos Tevez remains effective

Juventus vs Real Madrid

Five things we learnt from the Italian's Champions League first leg win over the Spanish giants
Ashes 2015: Test series looks a lost cause for England... whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket

Ashes series looks a lost cause for England...

Whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket, says Stephen Brenkley
Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power