CASE LAW - R v Husband

BC Courts Coat of ArmsBarbara Husband was sentenced to a $500 fine and given a five year driving prohibition after being found guilty of driving without due care and attention when she struck and injured a child while attempting to park in the parking lot of Ospika Pets in Prince George. She appealed the decision as being inappropriate. She lives 17 km. out of town, has driven for 69 years without receiving a traffic ticket, has lots of friends and is active in her church.

Evidence indicates that Ms. Husband drove diagonally across the oncoming lane in front of two vehicles, entered the parking lot, passed behind a parked Ford Explorer and turned left to enter her chosen parking spot.

Ms. Paulson was in the process of putting one of her children into the Explorer while another stood beside her waiting for her turn. That child was the one struck by Ms. Husband as she entered the parking space.

The trial judge said this in passing sentence:

[13]      The extent to which her driving on December 19 of 2018 shows a lack of attention is significant. It almost amounts to dangerous driving, in my view.

Madam Justice Power rejected Ms. Husband's bid to trade a shorter driving prohibition for a higher fine:

[32]         Having considered the totality of the record before me, I can find no error in the imposition of a five‑year driving prohibition on the facts of this case.  In upholding the five‑year driving prohibition, I recognize that this may result in a lifetime driving ban for Ms. Husband.  I recognize that that is a significant impact for her and for her community.  I do not find the ban itself or that impact to be disproportionate, given the underlying facts here.  That effect is caused by Ms. Husband's age of 85.  The reality is that many citizens of Ms. Husband's age voluntarily give up their driver's licence, even if they have not been involved in such a driving incident as in this case.