Police did not request statement on night of crash: Witness
by Glynn Brothen
(SHANNON QUESNEL / iNFOnews.ca)
August 22, 2014 - 10:45 AM
KAMLOOPS - A Kamloops Supreme court heard Thursday morning about more RCMP errors in the investigation of a fatal accident when a witness who was first on scene said officers told him to leave the accident site and go home.
Brittany Plotnikoff, 20, and her boyfriend Ken Craigdallie, 32, died after a truck crashed on Mackenzie Avenue March 20, 2010. The couple allegedly spent the night drinking with Wayne Fedan, born 1961, who is on trial for impaired driving causing death among other charges.
Ryan Hlatky, 22, who lived at his mother’s mobile home in the Woodland trailer park, said he was getting ready for bed around 1 a.m. when he heard a loud crash. He ran outside with his mother and step-father where he saw a truck in pieces, the passenger side destroyed.
“(It was) gone,” Hlatky said. “Completely smashed.”
Hlatky said he noticed three occupants in the car, including the driver, who was conscious. Hlatky said the driver looked up at him and said “there’s three of us” before crawling over the passenger to exit the truck.
Hlatky said he only noticed the driver and passenger in the truck before his family pointed out the third occupant, a girl, who was about 10 to 15 feet away from the truck.
Hlatky’s step-father checked her pulse.
“She was gone,” he said.
When emergency vehicles arrived on scene, Hlatky said he and his parents approached the officers to share a statement but were swiftly told to leave the scene.
“They refused to even talk to us and told us to go back into our house," he said.
Hlatky said the officers did not ask for his name, his parents’ names or the family’s house address.
It wasn’t until months later Hlatky said the RCMP contacted him and his family. This was after his neighbour received a subpoena prompting his mother to contact crown counsel independently.
Justice Deborah Kloegman has already excluded pieces of RCMP evidence—including one of Fedan’s blood samples—from the trial after determining officers violated Fedan’s rights by not helping him contact a lawyer.
Lawyers Anthony Varesi and Bernie Caffaro are entering a voir dire deliberation in the next few days of trial. A voir dire is a trial within a trial to determine admissibility of evidence. Crown prosecutor Caffaro is hoping to enter a second blood sample taken from Fedan on the day of the crash.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014