Bob Marsh - file photo. The accident occurred on Bridge Street in Princeton BC, in July, 2015.

B.C. driver fined $1,500 for accident involving senior’s death

A Princeton man riding the scooter died of complications

A driver who “indirectly” caused the death of a senior citizen on a downtown Princeton street, nearly three years ago, was slapped with a $1,500 fine in court Thursday.

Garry Donald, 52, of Princeton, pleaded guilty to driving a motor vehicle without due care and attention.

No license suspension was attached to the sentence, although Judge Michelle Daneliuk told Donald the superintendent of motor vehicles will likely issue such an order.

Court heard that on July 22, 2015, Donald was driving a BMW on Bridge Street near Halliford Avenue when he struck a man riding a scooter.

“He had just looked up to open his sunroof,” said duty counsel Kathryn Lundman.

The victim was not fatally injured at the scene, but was taken to Princeton General Hospital with fractures and abrasions, the court heard.

“Immobilization was required because of the fractures,” said Crown Attorney Andrew Vandersluys. “The complication was he developed pneumonia and died in hospital.”

Lundman told the court that Donald, a retired plumber and gas fitter, was diagnosed with MS in 2010 and supports himself on a pension.

“This has had a great impact on his life,” she said. “It has created depression.”

Vandersluys provided the bench with considerable case law to consider before reaching a sentence, and noted in his submission that Donald was not traveling at a high rate of speed when the accident occurred.

Before fining Donald, Daneliuk acknowledged the accused had a history of driving offenses, “mostly speeding tickets and a few other small matters,” but possessed a clean record for the past 12 years.

Daneliuk said that death was “an indirect consequence” of Donald’s actions.

“There can be no doubt that the loss of life impacted [the victim’s] family greatly.”

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Bob Marsh - file photo. The accident occurred on Bridge Street in Princeton BC, in July, 2015.

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