Driver under influence when crash killed family: cops say

TRAGEDY: Emergency services at the scene of a fatal car crash between two cars at Dyraaba in June. Three people died.
TRAGEDY: Emergency services at the scene of a fatal car crash between two cars at Dyraaba in June. Three people died. Cathy Adams

POLICE allege the driver of a car that crashed into another vehicle killing a man and his two children at Dyraaba in June was under the influence of drugs.

Malcolm Harris, 36, was in Lismore Local Court yesterday on a charge of driving while disqualified.

After an extensive investigation by the Ballina Crash Investigation Unit, a further 12 charges have been laid, alleging he was driving while under the influence of a cocktail of drugs including methadone, diazepam and marijuana.

It was revealed in court that his licence was suspended until 2030 and he was driving the car without permission from the owner.

Harris appeared via video link and will now be charged with three counts of dangerous driving occasioning death while under the influence plus another charge of dangerous driving occasioning grievous bodily harm while under the influence.

Bail was refused and he will remain in custody until the case resumes on September 17.

The crash killed Shaun Zagar, 28 and his children Kaleb, 6 and Zara, 5 who were waiting for a school bus on the side of Martins Rd, near the intersection with McDonalds Bridge Rd.

They were sitting inside their car at the time of the accident. Mr Harris had his daughter, 3, and son, 4, in the car with him at the time of the accident. They were all taken to Lismore Base hospital with various injuries.

Topics:  crash dyraaba fatal dyraaba tragedy editors picks lismore local court

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