A Greater Sudbury man facing impaired driving and refusing a breath sample charges arising from an early morning vehicle stop on Ramsey Lake Road has been convicted of the Highway Traffic Act charge of careless driving.

On Thursday, Ontario Court Justice Richard Humphrey, accepting a joint sentencing submission from assistant Crown attorney Russell Wood and defence lawyer Berk Keaney, gave Andrea Caruso, 50, a $1,000 fine and six-month probation order that includes a condition he not have any alcohol in his system while driving.

Caruso will also be making a donation to a local charity, the court was told.

Keaney had entered a guilty plea on his client’s behalf, as Caruso was not present.

The court heard a Greater Sudbury Police officer noticed a westbound vehicle on Ramsey Lake Road about 4 a.m. Nov. 11, 2017, to be moving some 20-30 kilometres below the speed limit.

The officer also said the vehicle’s rear taillights were not activated and the vehicle was weaving in its lane.

The vehicle was stopped and Caruso was found to be the driver.

“There was some indication Mr. Caruso had consumed alcohol earlier in the morning,” said Wood.

Caruso declined a breath sample. He was subsequently charged with impaired driving and refusing a breath sample.

Wood said lengthy pre-trial discussions that included a recommendation from the judge involved, a Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms challenge before the court, the Crown having issues with witness availability, along with some new evidence that had surfaced which would have resulted in an adjournment, all led to the joint sentencing submission.

Caruso’s trial had been scheduled for Thursday and was expected to take one day.

Caruso had no prior record.

As a result of the plea to the careless driving charge, the Crown dropped two Criminal Code charges against Caruso.

Source: The Sudbury Star