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Cyclist fined $1,000 for running red light, killing Calgary senior

A file photo of a traffic light.
A file photo of a traffic light. Paul Soucy/Global News

A Calgary man has been fined $1,000 after pleading guilty to a cycling collision that left a senior dead in the summer of 2018.

On July 16, 2018, at the intersection of Richmond Road and Crowchild Trail S.W., Paul Joseph MacNeil ran a red light while riding his bike and struck a 75-year-old man who was crossing the street in a marked crosswalk.

The man was rushed to hospital where he died days later.

READ MORE: Calgary police seeking the public’s help in fatal cyclist-pedestrian collision

MacNeil was charged in January 2019 with failing to stop at a traffic light.

According to his defence lawyer, Cory Wilson, MacNeil pleaded guilty on Monday — which was originally supposed to be the start of a three-day trial — under the Traffic Safety Act violation as part of a joint submission from the defence and the Crown.

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Along with the $1,000 fine, his client was also charged a $150 victims fund surcharge.

READ MORE: Cyclist charged in relation to fatal pedestrian collision in southwest Calgary

Wilson said the collision was a tragedy, adding that in issuing the fine, the judge wasn’t trying to “make the family whole.” He also said it was stressed in court that no amount of money would bring the family’s loved one back.

“[MacNeil] was pleading guilty to only that he ran a red light,” Wilson said, adding it’s not a criminal offence.
“The fact there was a low fine isn’t a reflection on [the victim’s] life. The actual fine, the sentence that [MacNeil] got, isn’t a result of someone that died.”

Wilson said he made submissions on behalf of his client in court, including an apology to the family where MacNeil expressed he’s remorseful and takes full responsibility for the collision.

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Wilson said the years since the crash have been “incredibly difficult” for MacNeil, adding it’s “something that’s going to be with him for the rest of his life.”

The wife and son of the man who was killed declined to give victim impact statements, Wilson said.