Woman’s death was an accident, man charged tells reporters

Rosie
Rosie Gillingham
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William Conway to have bail hearing Nov. 13

A man suspected of hitting and killing his girlfriend while driving drunk at Airport Heights in St. John’s said he didn't mean to do it.

William Conway is escorted out of Courtroom No. 7 in provincial court in St. John’s and back to the holding cells Thursday after he was arrested for causing the death of his girlfriend by hitting her with his car while drunk.

As William Conway was being escorted in and out of provincial court in St John's today, he said to reporters "I'd like to apologize to the Doyle family. It was an accident."

The Doyle family is believed to be related to the victim, Veronica Lewis.

The 57-year-old woman's body was found lying on the road on Firdale Drive, where it's believed the two had lived together in Airport Heights, at around 1:20 a.m. Thursday.

Police say Conway was drunk when he got behind the wheel of his vehicle, hit the woman and took off.

Officers picked him up a short time later at the ferry terminal in Portugal Cove-St. Philip's.

Police say the two were in a relationship and may have had an argument or altercation not long before.

When Conway first appeared in court Thursday, he was sent for a psychiatric assessment. The judge was told today that Conway was deemed mentally fit to stand trial.

He's due back in court Nov. 13 for a bail hearing.

Conway is charged with impaired driving causing death, operation of a motor vehicle while having a blood-alcohol level over the legal limit causing death, failure to remain at the scene of an accident (hit and run) and four counts of breaching court orders.

Those breaches involve allegations that Conway assaulted Lewis on Aug. 14 of this year. He was scheduled to appear in court to answer to those charges Dec. 15.

His lengthy criminal record also includes a charge of leaving the scene of an accident Feb. 15 in Portugal Cove-St. Philip’s.

There was a gap in his record before that. The latest charges before that date back to 1992 and include convictions for crimes such as assault and possessing stolen goods.

The RNC’s major crime unit is continuing the investigation and is working with the office of the chief medical examiner to determine the cause of the victim’s death.

 

 

•••

(Earlier story)

Driver accused of hitting, killing girlfriend with his vehicle is behind bars

William Conway was also charged in August with assaulting Veronica Lewis

A woman is dead and her boyfriend is behind bars as a result of an incident that happened early Thursday morning in the Airport Heights area of St. John’s.

Police say William Conway was drunk when he got behind the wheel of his vehicle, hit Veronica Lewis and took off, leaving her dead on the road.

The 57-year-old woman’s body was found in front of the couple’s apartment on Firdale Drive at about 1:20 a.m.

Police say the two may have had an argument or altercation not long before.

When Conway was led into provincial court in St. John’s Thursday afternoon, the 50-year-old was expressionless as he slowly walked past a group of reporters who gathered outside Courtroom No. 7.

On the recommendation of duty counsel Jane Fitzpatrick, Judge Pamela Goulding agreed to send Conway to the Waterford Hospital to undergo an overnight psychiatric assessment.

Conway is due back in court today.

He’s charged with impaired driving causing death, operation of a motor vehicle while having a blood-alcohol level over the legal limit causing death, failure to remain at the scene of an accident (hit and run) and four counts of breaching court orders.

Those breaches involve allegations that Conway assaulted Lewis in August of this year. He was scheduled to appear in court to answer to those charges Dec. 15.

His lengthy criminal record also includes a charge of leaving the scene of an accident Feb. 15 in Portugal Cove-St. Philip’s.

There was a gap in his record before that. The latest charges before that date back to 1992 and include convictions for crimes such as assault and possessing stolen goods.

The RNC’s major crime unit is continuing the investigation and is working with the office of the chief medical examiner to determine the cause of death.

 

rgillingham@thetelegram.com

Twitter: @TelyCourt

Organizations: Waterford Hospital

Geographic location: Portugal Cove

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Recent comments

  • Kevin Power
    October 25, 2013 - 10:41

    Another blight on humanity.

  • JUST SAYING
    October 25, 2013 - 10:13

    See folks, this is what our legal system gets you. Time to bring back the justice system.

  • grant
    October 25, 2013 - 08:57

    He got one thing going for him, in NL, driving drunk and causing death and leaving the person dead on the road is not a serious crime in NL. It would be a great story for the telegram to check and see what the last four impaired driving causing death and leaving the scene of the accident.