A teenage driver has pleaded guilty to a lesser charge over the hit-and-run death of Charlie Stevens at Schoolies celebrations last year.

Dhirren Randhawa, 19, pleaded guilty to a charge of aggravated driving without due care and leaving the scene of a crash at Goolwa Beach, south of Adelaide, in November.

The more serious charge of causing death by dangerous driving, and a charge of failing to truly answer questions, were dropped. 

Dhirren Randhawa pleaded guilty to aggravated driving without due care and leaving the scene of a crash.(ABC News: Che Chorley)

Charlie Stevens, the son of SA Police Commissioner Grant Stevens, suffered an irreversible brain injury and died in hospital the following day.

His death sparked an outpouring of grief across the country with Charlie’s local sporting clubs, school, state and federal politicians all commenting on his death.

Speaking outside the Adelaide Magistrates Court surrounded by family, Commissioner Grant Stevens said Randhawa had handed over a letter of apology. 

“This is one step in the process. There are a few more steps to go so, I think it would be appropriate for us to say more at a later point in time,” he said.

“I think on behalf of our family, we’d just like to acknowledge that Dhirren has taken responsibility for his actions that saw us lose our son Charlie and we’ve also been handed a letter of apology so, we’ll take time to read that.”

Grant Stevens says Randhawa handed over a letter of apology to the family.(ABC News: Che Chorley)

Randhawa was granted bail in November and initially was not allowed to contact four witnesses connected to the case, inlcuding his friend Montana Rose Bowd.

In December, a magistrate approved Randhawa’s application to have his bail varied so that he could speak with Ms Rose Bowd.

Chief Magistrate Mary-Louise Hribal continued Randhawa’s bail.

Randhawa declined to comment as he left court with his mother and supporters.

He will next appear in the District Court in August.

Posted , updated