A Bruce County man is off the road after a wild ride ended with his truck plowing through a Sarnia auto shop.
Details of the bizarre journey were read to Sarnia Court as Corbyn Critchfield, 21, appeared by video May 25 pleading guilty to careless driving.
It was around 10 pm the night of Jan. 20, 2020 when the trail of destruction began. As Critchfield approached the intersection of Lambton Mall Road and Quinn Drive he drove his pickup through the median and wiped out a sign.
After continuing across the street and driving over the grass Critchfield hit a shopping cart corral in the parking lot of the Princess Auto Shop. It was far from the worst damage the store would suffer though. Critchfield’s next maneuver was to continue driving right through the front windows of the building.
There were employees inside as the truck entered but the shop was closed and they were out of the front area. Critchfield left the truck and was found nearby by police. He was put in an ambulance where he pulled down his pants and urinated all over the inside of the vehicle.
“What happened on this night was very unusual,” says Defence Lawyer Steve Menzies. He says his client was at a gathering and became overpowered after taking hits from a bong.
“We believe he was inadvertently affected intensely by this substance, whatever it may have been... to a point where he has no memory of these events,” says Menzies. “There’s no way that he would be insulting to any other people, as he obviously was when he interacted with the first responders. It is completely out of character.”
Crown Attorney Sarah Carmody requested an elevated fine of $2,000, "Given the severity of the occurrence and the concerning nature of the driving at the time." Menzies and Justice Deborah Austin agreed with the submission.
“Given the seriousness of the incident itself, the impact on a community business, the risk to other people, the risk to yourself and the fact that an accident was caused, obviously a significant and elevated penalty is justified,” says Austin.
Critchfield is also banned from driving for a year. Restitution for the damages to Princess Auto are being addressed in Civil Court.
Alex Kurial, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Independent