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Fife dental nurse suspended following fatal car accident

Police at Riverside Retail Park in Leven.
Police at Riverside Retail Park in Leven.

A Fife dental nurse who was involved in a fatal car accident which claimed the life of a pensioner has been suspended by a medical watchdog.

Tiegan Carruthers has been handed an 18-month suspension by the General Dental Council following a hearing in London.

The 19-year-old has been banned on the grounds of “public protection” after she was charged with a number of offences following the accident on October 29.

Linda Dunn tragically lost her life after the collision which happened near the B&M store on Riverside Road in Leven.

A tribute statement issued through Police Scotland at the time said the 68-year-old would be “sadly missed by her family and friends”.

The referral to the General Dental Council was made on November 3 2017 after Miss Carruthers was charged by Police Scotland.

She was not present or represented at the hearing in London but had been notified that it was going ahead.

The decision notice said: “The committee was informed that Ms Carruthers allegedly falsely claimed to have been driving the vehicle, which was her car, at the time of the fatal collision when in fact her partner was driving.

“She allegedly allowed her partner to drive her vehicle knowing he was both disqualified and uninsured.”

The public notice from the hearing also told how an anonymous phone call was made to the dental nurse’s place of work where the caller shouted “murderer” at a member of staff.

Ms Headley, case presenter for the GDC, told the committee that an interim order was necessary despite Miss Carruther’s alleged dishonesty not taking place in relation to her work.

She submitted that the appropriate period of suspension would be for 18 months to allow for the criminal investigation to conclude.

The decision notice added: “The committee has noted that this order will prevent Ms Carruthers from working as a registered dental care practitioner and, as a consequence, Ms Carruthers may be caused financial hardship.

“However, in applying the principle of proportionality, the committee determined that, in any event, the need to protect the public and the wider public interest outweighed Ms Carruthers’ interests in this regard.”

Miss Carruthers appeared in private alongside her partner Gregg Anderson, then 26, at Kirkcaldy Sheriff Court in the days following the accident.

She was charged with three road traffic offences relating to insurance, licence and the duty to give information about the driver’s identity.

Mr Anderson was charged with six offences including causing death by dangerous driving.

Both have also been accused of attempting to pervert the course of justice.

No trial date has yet been set.

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