A Thunder Bay man who almost backed into a marked police cruiser while driving drunk in Greater Sudbury in late September didn’t just apologize for his bad decision in court Monday.

David Jensen also thanked the two police officers who stopped and arrested him.

“It’s one of the most embarrassing things I have ever done in my life,” Jensen told Ontario Court Justice John Keast just before he received a $2,000 fine and one-year licence suspension. “I’m embarrassed, totally embarrassed. It was a weak moment, a poor, poor decision. I really appreciate the police officers pulling me over and keeping the streets safe.”

Jensen, 63, had pleaded guilty to charges of impaired driving and having more than the legal allowable level of alcohol in his system within two hours of driving.

Keast issued the fine and licence suspension on the blowing-over charge and stayed the impaired driving charge.

Jensen, who works in the mining field and is also a volunteer firefighter, had no prior record.

“We’re never going to see you in a court again,” said Keast. “You have learned from this. The facts are serious. You could have killed yourself. You could have hit a police cruiser.”

Jensen represented himself in court.

The court heard that Greater Sudbury Police officers on patrol on Notre Dame Avenue about midnight Sept. 29 noticed a southbound GMC Envoy being driven slowly and erratically as it approached the downtown core. The vehicle came very close to a centre median on Ste. Anne’s Road and then stopped well into the painted crosswalk at the Elm Street intersection. The vehicle then reversed and almost struck the cruiser which was following.

When officers approached the driver they noticed a heavy odour of alcohol. Jensen, who had slurred speech, had difficulty finding his driver’s licence.

“When asked for his insurance, he attempted to surrender a bag of elastics,” said assistant Crown attorney Catherine Hansuld.

Jensen also had difficulty answering questions, and admitted initially to having consumed one beer. He later said he drank three.

Jensen then told officers “you got me” and “I’m impaired.” He was arrested and taken to police headquarters where he produced Intoxilyzer readings of 160 – twice the legal limit of 80.

“The facts are concerning,” said Hansuld in asking Keast to impose a fine of $3,000 and not the minimum $2,000. “The accused was driving very dangerously. He was straddling one lane and drifting in another lane. When the vehicle tried to reverse, he almost hit a marked police cruiser. The readings are also quite high.”

Source: The Sudbury Star