Wild demolition derby burnout earns repeat offender jail time

A burnout on a public street in a demolition derby car was the last straw for an offender with a long list of driving infractions.

A Revelstoke man will be cooling his lead foot in jail for two months after pleading guilty to a number of Motor Vehicle Act offences.

Revelstoke resident Michael Robinson, 33, was led from Provincial Court in handcuffs on Nov. 2 after his justifications for the incidents weren’t well received by Justice Mark Takahashi.

Crown counsel Mariane Armstrong described one recent incident in Salmon Arm when Robinson was caught driving while prohibited. At the time, he was driving a demolition derby car being used at a fair. Except Robinson was on a public street, performing a burnout. That burnout created so much smoke that an RCMP cruiser that came to investigate nearly ran into the derby car, which was concealed in the white cloud, Armstrong told the court.

Robinson spoke in his own defence. He said he was transporting the car from one gate of the fair to another. “The accelerator stuck, so I put the brakes on,” he told the judge. He went on to explain away other incidents he was being sentenced for, but he was cut off by the judge. “Why are you even in the car?” Takahashi asked. “Do you have problems understanding what courts mean when they tell you you don’t drive?”

Crown counsel Armstrong cited Robinson’s previous 13 convictions, including six driving without insurance, five driving while prohibited and three driving without a licence when asking for a four- to six-month sentence of straight time, and a “significant” driving prohibition of 18 months to two years.

Defence lawyer Melissa Klages noted the unemployed father of three was the sole provider for his children, asking for a 45-day intermittent sentence.

He received three, concurrent, two-month jail sentences and a two-year driving ban for two counts of driving while prohibited, two counts of driving while suspended, and an infraction against a red light.


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