Supreme Court overturns conviction

Eight difficult years ended for Clearwater resident Randy Roy on June 1 when the Supreme Court of Canada voted 7 – 0 to clear him

Eight difficult years ended for Clearwater resident Randy Roy on June 1 when the Supreme Court of Canada voted 7 – 0 to clear him of a charge of dangerous driving causing death.

Roy’s ordeal began on Nov. 25, 2004, when he was driving home from work at a mill in Vavenby with his longtime friend, Mark Harrington.

There was dense fog at the time, and when Roy turned his motorhome onto Highway 5, it was struck by a tractor-trailer.

Harrington was pronounced dead at the scene and Roy was transported to Dr. Helmcken Memorial Hospital in Clearwater and then to Kamloops’ Royal Inland.

The male driver and female passenger of the semi sustained minor injuries.

Roy was convicted of dangerous driving causing death in 2006. He appealed to the B.C. Court of Appeal but the ruling was upheld.

In overturning the conviction, the Supreme Court of Canada stated, “In this case, the trial judge erred in law, erred by equating fault with the failure to explain the conduct, but also by failing to conduct any meaningful inquiry into whether Roy had displayed a marked departure from the standard of care to be expected of a reasonable person in the same circumstances.”

The Supreme Court justices also said, “The record here discloses a single and momentary error in judgment with tragic consequences.”