The 11-year-old found to be chauffeuring his 68-year-old neighbour on an errand run has been driving since he was nine.
Hamilton police pulled over "a very young looking" male driver around 8:30 p.m. Monday night. He was driving the older woman to help her with "an array of errands."
And the boy was actually an experienced driver, police say. He'd already been driving for two years.
"The young boy was upset and thought he was in trouble," said Const. Debbie McGreal-Dinning from Hamilton Police Service. "The female exited the passenger side and couldn't understand what the issue was. She stated that he has been driving the car for two years."
The parents were aware of their son's friendship with the neighbour but not that he had been driving, she said.
The boy's youthful appearance sparked police to pull over the vehicle in the area of Albright Road and Quigley Road on Monday. When they pulled over the pair, officers learned that the woman had taught her young neighbour to drive.
Ontarians need to be at least 16 years old to apply for a driver's licence.
Officers reacted only to the age of the driver, not to how he was doing on the road, McGreal-Dinning said.
"They didn't pull the car over because of the way the vehicle was operating. They just observed the fact that the driver looked young."
The woman was served with two provincial offence notices - permitting an unlicenced person to drive a motor vehicle and for having no insurance.
The former charge carries a $385 fine.