The afternoon of June 21, 2009 was a fateful one for Lawrence Bush and his three friends. Bush drank, did drugs, drove and, as a result, killed his friend. For this, he received a 12 year prison sentence. He thought that was too high. The Ontario Court of Appeal disagreed and upheld the highest sentence in the land to date for impaired driving and criminal negligence causing death: 2012 ONCA 743.
The facts were “egregious”; the driving was “outrageous.” Bush, on bail for an impaired driving charge, had been legally barred from driving since 1985 and was convicted 10 days earlier, for the 8th time, of driving while his license was suspended. Despite this, he chose to drive a car, in the middle of the day, down country roads, for over an hour at speeds of 170 km/hr, all the while drinking and continuing to take narcotics. The sheer stupidity included driving at 110 km/hr with Bruno, a passenger who was also drunk and high, “hood surfing” on the hood of the car. The car ended up in the ditch. Unfortunately for all, it didn’t stay there.