Edmonton Journal

Hit-and-run driver sent to prison

23-year-old gets more than two years for striking four pedestrian­s

- RYAN CORMIER rcormier@edmontonjo­urnal.com

An Edmonton driver who was so high on drugs he doesn’t remember striking four pedestrian­s downtown was sent to prison Friday for two years and seven months.

Brandon James Hudson, 23, has never been able to explain why he kept driving while intentiona­lly striking people Sept. 24, 2014.

“He struck them for reasons only known to Mr. Hudson, or perhaps not even known by Mr. Hudson,” Crown prosecutor Anders Quist said.

At about 3:30 p.m. Hudson was driving downtown in a green Eagle Vision sedan he had stolen from his stepfather. Hudson was under court orders at the time not to have any contact with his stepfather and not to leave Manitoba.

Hudson’s first victims were two men walking along 105th Avenue near the George Spady Centre.

The two pedestrian­s heard an engine revving behind them, but were unable to run before Hudson drove onto the sidewalk and struck them. Both men went over the car’s hood. They suffered scrapes and bruises. Hudson kept driving, turned onto 101st Street and struck another person. That man limped away and police never found him.

A few minutes later, Hudson stopped to allow a man and woman to cross at 103rd Avenue and 105th Street. This time, he waited until they were in front of his car, then stomped on the accelerato­r.

While the woman was not hit, the man suffered a fractured leg and his head shattered Hudson’s windshield. Hudson kept driving and struck a vehicle parked at a red light at 104th Avenue. He then drove between two vehicles, scraping alongside one as he tried to escape. A block later, his vehicle shuddered to a stop.

“He didn’t stop until the vehicle became inoperable,” provincial Court Judge Larry Anderson said as he sentenced Hudson.

Hudson attempted to flee on foot from police, but was soon caught. He was seemingly incoherent, court heard. “He talked about how ‘they’ were after him,” Quist told court. “‘They’ were going to get him.”

When put into a holding cell, Hudson attacked his cellmate and punched him in the head. Hudson knew his cellmate, but his other victims were strangers.

“I take full responsibi­lity for my crimes, for what I did to those people,” Hudson said in court.

Court heard that Hudson had a rough childhood in Manitoba, where several of his older relatives attended residentia­l schools. His mother introduced him to crack cocaine and he barely knew his father.

Hudson pleaded guilty to nine charges in provincial court, including dangerous driving causing bodily harm and hit-and-run. Once released, he will be banned from driving for five years.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada