Woman gets jail time for two impaired convictions

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PICTOU – A 22-year-old woman arrested for impaired driving twice in same month will spend the next six months in jail.

Emily Ann Rae of Loch Broom was sentenced in Pictou provincial court Tuesday on a charge of impaired driving and fleeing police.

Rae was arrested following an incident in the early morning hours of May 18, 2013, when Westville police officers pulled into the drive-thru at McDonald’s Restaurant to place an order and were told by an employee that a driver in front of them was intoxicated.

Police spoke to Rae in the restaurant’s parking lot and noticed she was showing signs of alcohol use, but she sped off from the area before they could finish their investigation.

The court was told she went through at least one red light on East River Road and travelled down the Trans-Canada Highway at a high speed, turning off her headlights at one point to make her vehicle more difficult to find.

Police stop pursuing Rae when the cruiser’s speed reached 170km an hour but continued to search for the vehicle afterwards. They were unable to find her car, but later located her at the Aberdeen Hospital.

Rae had been sentenced on May 7, 2013, to a one-year driving prohibition and a $1,000 on an impaired driving charge.

Crown attorney Bill Gorman said the fact her second arrested happened 10 days later make her a serious risk the public.  

“Ten days after being before your honour, convicted to impaired driving and prohibited from driving a motor vehicle, she was significantly impaired driving at a high rate of speed, turning off the headlights on the highway and her car weaving from one lane to another. That type of behaviour has to be denounced,” he said.

Gorman said Rae’s pre-sentence report indicates she is struggling with some mental health issues as well as being a severe diabetic who is currently unemployed and doesn’t have a grasp on how her abuse of alcohol is affecting her life.

Defence lawyer Sandy MacKay said his client has reached bottom and she must start to rebuild her life. He said she is without a job, has no money, her car has been repossessed and her health is poor.

“She is a young girl and she had her problems and obviously she didn’t know how to cope,” he said.

Rae’s six-month jail sentence will be followed by 12 months of probation that states she must take part in mental health counselling and receive help for her substance abuse. 

In addition, she is prohibited from driving a motor vehicle for three years.

Organizations: Trans-Canada Highway, Aberdeen Hospital

Geographic location: Loch Broom, Pictou, Westville East River Road

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