The Sudbury Star file photo
Sudbury Courthouse

A southern Ontario driver who produced alcohol readings three times over the limit when stopped in Sudbury has been fined $1,000.

Alan Beattie, 59, of Oro-Medonte Township, also lost his driver’s licence for a year.

“I agree with the Crown the driving was horrendous,” Ontario Court Justice Jean-Gilles Lebel told Alan Beattie, 59, of Oro-Medonte Township on Monday in Sudbury court. “It was good luck, not good management you didn’t kill someone. It was a good thing a citizen spotted you and reported you to police or it could have been much worse.”

Beattie, who was facing charges of impaired driving, having more than the legal allowable level of alcohol in his system while driving, and dangerous driving, pleaded guilty to the impaired driving charge.

The Crown and defence lawyer Christopher Avery suggested the penalties.

Beattie did not address the court.

The guilty plea avoids a drinking and driving trial. The Crown alleged Beattie drove for about two hours between Parry Sound and Greater Sudbury on Dec. 21, going all over the road and onto the shoulder. He was also allegedly found with two open cans of beer when stopped.

Assistant Crown attorney Len Walker said Ontario Provincial Police officers were alerted by a motorist to a possible impaired driver in a Nissan vehicle heading north from Parry Sound on Highway 69 about 6:05 p.m.

The caller, who was also northbound, then followed the Nissan driver, indicating that the vehicle would often straddle the passing lane line and also went on the shoulder of the highway at least five times.

Police officers located the driver south of Greater Sudbury and followed it for about four kilometres. The officer saw the driver weaving, travelling lower than the speed limit, and often entered the other northbound lane. When the cruiser’s lights were activated, the Nissan driver did not stop. The same happened when the cruiser siren was activated.

The driver, Beattie, did finally pull over and was found to have an open can of beer between his legs and wet pants. He later produced Intoxilyzer readings of 260 and 240, the first reading being more than three times the legal limit of 80 while driving.

Avery said Beattie does not admit to the breath readings and disputed that he urinated in his pants, but rather spilled some beer.

Avery added that Beattie, who had no prior record, was suffering from depression and had alcohol issues at the time, but has since reconciled with his spouse and thing are going much better.

Walker said it was a miracle Beattie was not involved in a fatal crash.

“He’s lucky he didn’t kill somebody,” said the assistant Crown attorney. “It was a lengthy period of driving over a period of two hours.”

Walker added that in addition to the open can of beer Beattie had between his legs, officers also found an open can of beer in a nearby cup holder.

As a result of the guilty plea, Walker dropped two other two charges Beattie was facing.

Source: The Sudbury Star