A Red Deer man involved in a fatal hit and run on Taylor Drive bridge in 2012 was found guilty on Friday in Red Deer Court of Queen’s Bench.
Justice John Little found Brent Robert Cameron, 26, formerly of St. John’s. N.B., guilty of failing to stop and help at the collision scene and guilty of mischief for reporting his SUV stolen.
Paul Gabriel Bertin, 18, had recently moved to Red Deer from his hometown of Botha. He was run down and found on the northbound lanes of the Taylor Drive Bridge at about 2 a.m. on Oct. 6, 2012.
He died from the head and neck injuries sustained in the initial collision. Another vehicle also drove over him as he lay on the road.
Damage to Cameron’s Subaru Outback matched debris from scene.
When questioned by police, Cameron maintained he hit a dark figure, an animal like a small bear, standing upright.
Little said his claim of hitting an animal was “totally lacking in credibility.”
He said Cameron intended to mislead police and showed himself to be a liar by reporting his vehicle stolen.
He recalled how Cameron refused to answer an officer who asked him why he abandoned his vehicle and reported it stolen if he had hit an animal.
The driver’s side of the windshield sustained so much damage it would have been difficult for the driver to see.
Early in the investigation Cameron did admit to police his vehicle was not stolen outside a downtown bar as he first reported.
Defence did not contest the charge of public mischief related to the stolen vehicle report.
A woman with Cameron testified he stopped the vehicle and got out for about a minute while on the bridge after she heard a thump. She was intoxicated and texting at the time and did not see the collision.
They had met at a bar and were on their way to an after party. Following the collision, he parked his vehicle in Riverside Meadows and then called a cab and sent her away.
Little said another driver who found Bertin on the street testified she saw bubbles coming out of his mouth so he may have been alive after he was struck.
He said that driver could tell it was a person lying on the road and so would Cameron if he had stopped to check although it was unclear where he stopped.
Little said either Cameron didn’t stop, or stopped and failed to offer assistance.
The trial resumed on Friday with closing arguments from Crown Prosecutor Wayne Silliker and defence counsel Glen Allen.
The trial started in January but had to be adjourned because Cameron was a no-show on the third day. He was arrested at a Red Deer residence 10 days later.
Defence called no evidence during the trial.
He will be held in custody until his sentencing, which is scheduled for July 22.