Case Study: Over 80
After a collision with a telephone pole, police were called to the scene to investigate. The client was arrested for impaired driving contrary to section 320.14(a) of the Criminal Code. Mr. C. was taken back to the police station for breath testing and was subsequently charged with operating a conveyance with 80 or greater mg of alcohol per 100 ml of blood contrary to section 320.14(1)(b) of the Code as well. After some perfunctory efforts to contact his lawyer of choice, police facilitated contact with Duty Counsel.
The Crown wanted a plea to the “over 80” charge for a $1,000 fine and a one year driving prohibition.
The client was a young first-time offender who wanted to go to university and start a career. He wanted to avoid a criminal record.
After pre-trial negotiations with the Crown, Mr. Lemaire was able to show that Mr. C.’s right to counsel (lawyer) of choice – as protected by the Charter of Rights and Freedoms – had been infringed.
The Crown agreed to resolve the case with a plea to “careless driving” under the Highway Traffic Act. The “over 80” charge was withdrawn. Mr. C. avoided a criminal record as well as implications for his driver’s licence.