Charity runner charged after travelling Quebec highway
An Alberta man running across Canada for charity spent five hours in an interrogation room and was charged with obstructing police after he used one of the country's busiest thoroughfares as part of his route.
Curtis Hargrove said he was arrested on the Trans-Canada Highway near Quebec City after he was pulled over, along with the RV accompanying him on his trip, by Quebec provincial police Monday afternoon.
"Vehicles could drive by in the two lanes. The motorhome's well out of the way, and, you know, I feel like there wasn't anything impeding traffic or anything," Hargrove told CBC News Tuesday.
Hargrove said he was warned a few times the day before that he wasn't allowed to run on the highway. But, he said, he doesn't understand the rationale and he posed little safety risk.
"You've got people driving past me on their cell phones. You've got people eating burgers. Nothing against anyone else, but I mean, I'm the least you should be worried about," he said.
Still, police stopped him again near St- Nicolas, Que. on Sunday afternoon and told him he needed to stop running or face arrest.
At first, Hargrove admits, he was frustrated and stubborn and questioned why he had to change his route.
That landed him in an interrogation room and later netted him a criminal charge. The woman driving the RV accompanying Hargrove was also issued a traffic ticket.
Quebec provincial police wouldn't comment on the incident other than to say Hargrove refused to co-operate with the officers who stopped him.
According to police, anyone who wants to run on the Trans-Canada has to seek permission from Transport Quebec.
Eddy Nolan, one of Hargrove's supporters in Montreal, says the province should be more lenient when it comes to people running for charity.
"Every province in Canada, since he started, has supported him and some even gave him an escort," he said. "Yet it seems like every time it comes to our province, in Quebec, there seems to be a problem."
Hargrove is trying to raise $1 million for the Stollery Children's Hospital Foundation in Edmonton. His run started 45 days ago in St. John's, N.L.
Hargrove now says he's agreed to take a different route as he continues west through Quebec.
He's due in court to answer to the charge in September.
- This story initially reported that Hargrove started his run in Halifax. In fact, he started in St. John's N.L.Jul 03, 2012 12:10 AM ET