Alcohol smelled on man charged in Ottawa cyclists crash
Police officers testified at an Ottawa courtroom they smelled alcohol on the man who turned himself in after a 2009 collision that injured five cyclists in the city.
Sommit Luangpakham, 47, is charged with multiple counts of dangerous driving causing bodily harm and failing to remain at the scene of an accident.
The charges stem from a July 19, 2009 incident on March Road in Ottawa's Kanata neighbourhood in which a van collided with a row of five cyclists travelling single file along a designated bike lane.
Ottawa Police Const. Kelly Rhoden and Ontario Provincial Police Sgt. Daril Holmes testified Wednesday that about four hours after the incident, Luangpakham turned himself in to a Kanata OPP station.
Speech not impaired, officer said
Rhoden said the man smelled of stale alcohol but that she could not administer a breathalyzer test because it had been more than three hours since the incident. Rhoden also said Luangpakham did not appear to be impaired or have slurred speech.
Defence lawyer Richard Addelman repeatedly asked the two officers what a stale odour of alcohol indicated. When pressed, Holmes testified he didn't have the expertise but said a stale smell generally indicated someone last had a drink about six hours earlier.
Holmes also testified he found a bottle cap in the accused pocket and said it was his experience that if someone was carrying one it indicated he had been drinking.
The trial will continue Thursday with the Crown expected to call a police traffic accident investigator and one of the cyclists injured in the crash.