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Ontario crash may lead to wrongful death suit

A 26-year-old man accused of causing a serious car accident in November has asked for a new lawyer, according to court sources. The Ontario man appeared in a Kitchener court on January 6 to face accusations of drunk driving causing death. It is not yet clear whether the family of the victim will pursue a wrongful death suit in addition to the criminal charges. 

According to the original accident record, the 26-year-old man was drunk when his vehicle plowed into another car on the night of November 27 while travelling on Highway 7/8 west of Kitchener. The 29-year-old female passenger in the other vehicle was killed immediately, and her 2-month-old son was rushed to Sick Kids Hospital in Toronto with critical injuries. The infant remains there as of this report

The man is looking to switch lawyers in advance of his next court appearance on January 16. So far, the lawyer he is courting has not committed to the case. The man stands charged with:

  • dangerous driving causing death and/or bodily harm
  • failure to provide a breath sample and submit to a drug test
  • impaired driving causing bodily harm, and
  • the initial impaired driving causing death charge

Should he be found guilty of these charges, the man will likely face prison time in addition to other censures, including driving suspensions and fines. Ontario law also allows the family of the deceased woman to file a wrongful death suit against him on her behalf, as well as a personal injury suit for her infant son. These suits would be handled in civil court, and the family would be entitled to use police evidence from the criminal case to support their claim. 

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