Woman with 19 prohibitions for drunk driving pleads guilty to two more charges
A Victoria woman found herself in a court room today for a familiar crime.
Forty-nine-year-old Suzanne Gurnell pleaded guilty today to one count of impaired driving and one count of driving while prohibited. Last April, she was arrested around 4 a.m. after her car swerved into a police officers’ lane before accelerating away.
“She was so drunk that our officers didn’t need to use a roadside screening device,” said Graeme LeBlanc of Victoria Police’s Road Safety Unit at the time.
Prior to the incident, Gurnell had 19 prohibitions for impaired driving in the last seven years, including three drunk driving convictions.
Mothers Against Drunk Driving and the provincial opposition say the law chronic offenders needs changing.
“She really does need to spend some time behind bars, and maybe that will wake her up. It’s unacceptable that someone can so blatantly disregard the law,” says NDP justice critic Mike Farnworth.
“I’m astounded that someone with 19 convictions can go out and drive a car,” says Bob Rorison of MADD Metro Vancouver.
He says that while the situation is rare, there are people in Canada with more convictions than Gurnell who are allowed to drive.
“She doesn’t seem to care about her own life, but she’s putting everyone else’s life in jeopardy…how come she can get a car and get it insured?”
Gurnell is back in court March 16 for sentencing.
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