CASE LAW - R v Schultz

BC Courts Coat of ArmsBrigitte Schultz was stopped by police in Abbotsford for failing to maintain proper lane position, driving more slowly than normal and failing to stop for a yellow light. She displayed symptoms of impairment and was tested with an approved screening device. The test registered a fail.

She was issued a 24 hour suspension, a ticket for driving without reasonable consideration for others and failing to stop for a yellow light. Her vehicle was towed.

Ms. Schultz disputed the ticket. She pled guilty to the yellow light offence and was found guilty of driving without due care and attention.

An appeal of both convictions was heard in the Supreme Court.

Ms. Schultz was allowed to withdraw her guilty plea to the yellow light count and a new trial was ordered.

The appeal for the driving without due care account was allowed and an acquittal was entered. The Judicial Justice based the conviction on the roadside screen. This evidence cannot be used as direct evidence to incriminate the driver.

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Comments

Drinking & Driving

After reading the entire ruling, the only question off my lips was;  if the device isn’t a tool for supporting the charge, then what use is it?  I think this judge just put the entire process in disrepute.  The driver wasn’t being charged with impairment but with a lessor, probably more fair charge.  

Judges.  They make law more complex and complicated then the intended purpose and are no supportive to getting drinkers off the roads with rulings like this.

Judges ruling corrects previous mistake

Having blown a fail is not evidence that the accused was guilty of the two charges.  To conclude otherwise would be like saying that someone who had blown a fail and who had been charged with committing other traffic offences should be found guilty regardless of whether it was proved they had committed the other offences. The intended purpose of the device was never to obtain convictions without the usual need for evidence of the commission of the offences in question. Rather than putting the process into disrepute, the judge redeemed it.

Submitted by E-Mail

One fact about R. v SCHULTZ was that the ASD test was not allowed as it was compelled AND she did not speak to a lawyer or decline the opportunity first. If the accused is chartered first and then gives ASD or approved instrument breath samples then the courts will convict for reasonable consideration with a reading of 50 or over.

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