12 month conditional sentence for running from police
A man who fled from police at a traffic stop, and eventually crashed his truck, was given a 12 month conditional sentence order.
Thomas McDuff appeared in provincial court in Drumheller on Friday, September 16. He has pleaded guilty on an earlier date to dangerous driving and failing to stop for a peace officer.
The court heard that shortly after 11 a.m. on March 13, Drumheller RCMP attempted to perform a traffic stop on a white Trailblazer when it failed to stop. It accelerated, cutting off vehicles and drove over a curb. At one point the vehicle appeared to slow down, attempting to stop, but then again sped away. It was attempting a turn near Elgin Hill when it crashed into a gravel berm.
The driver exited the vehicle with his hands up and told the officer he ran because he was a suspended driver. The court learned that McDuff, who now resides in Saskatchewan, was in Drumheller to park his vehicle at his parent’s home. On this day, he was driving to the car wash.
He has pleaded guilty at a previous court appearance, to have presentence report completed before sentencing. The report was characterized as positive, with McDuff expressing regret that he had put people at risk. The crown and defense recommended a conditional sentence order of 8 months.
Judge Grieve told the court that in cases such as these, typically person would be sentenced to three months in custody, and without a substantial sentence, the court struggles to send the message of the consequences of not stopping for the police.
He sentenced McDuff to a 12 month conditional sentence order. The first six months of the order he is under house arrest, and for the remainder, he is to abide by a curfew. He was also given an alcohol and driving prohibition and to complete 50 hours of community service.