Vernon woman serving time for 2014 fatal crash denied full parole due to 'undue risk' - InfoNews

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Vernon woman serving time for 2014 fatal crash denied full parole due to 'undue risk'

FILE PHOTO: Lori Victoria Vance is escorted from the Vernon courthouse following a sentence hearing Fevb. 27, 2017.
January 16, 2018 - 5:00 PM

VERNON - A Vernon woman convicted of drunk driving causing the death of an Okanagan nurse has been denied a request for full parole because she hasn't dealt with her alcohol issues yet.

Lori Victoria Vance, 40, is currently serving a three year sentence for impaired driving causing death and impaired driving causing harm in a 2014 car crash that left Kelowna nurse Erin Rae Smith, 33, dead, and her friend and co-worker Lindsey Hauck, 31, of Vernon, badly injured. The two nurses were on a coffee run when Vance T-boned their vehicle at an intersection.

READ MOREHow co-workers are supporting a Vernon nurse still recovering from accident

Vance was sentenced roughly one year ago, in February 2017, but the Parole Board of Canada assessed her application for parole on Oct. 20, 2017 and its decision was released this week to

Vance’s application for both day and full parole (to her home in the Central Interior) came with support from her case management team and parole officer, who said she expressed a high degree of insight and remorse, positive behaviour, and engagement with her correctional plan.

READ MORE"I despise myself:" Drunk driver sentenced for fatal Vernon car crash

But the parole board decided only to grant day parole for six months. Full parole was denied due to Vance’s “questionable ability to cope with stressors and… lack of structured approach to managing (her) risk on full parole.”

“Your reckless behaviour took the life of a beloved daughter and devastated the life of another,” the board said. “You caused lifelong trauma to their families. You continue to lack a deep level of understanding into your alcohol use and associated behaviour and the selfishness, which you indicate is a key risk factor, is still present. You kept the families waiting two years for a guilty plea and you plan to return to the community where they live. It is clear to the board from your presentation at the hearing that this was likely not the first time you drove while impaired, and you did not give the board a confident answer about your ability to avoid alcohol in the future.”

The board also noted that Vance appears to have “substantial remorse” and has engaged in rehabilitative interventions while incarcerated.

As part of her conditions on day parole, Vance must abstain from alcohol, avoid drinking establishments and must not operate a vehicle. She must also participate in counselling, avoid individuals involved in criminal behaviour or substance abuse, and avoid the victims’ families.

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