Constance Bay hit-and-run driver sentenced Dec. 10
Brother of victim tells court fatal crash was 'cruelest joke life could ever play'
An Ottawa man's fate will not be decided until Monday after an Ontario Superior Court judge asked for more time to consider evidence connected to the hit-and-run death of a mother of two on St. Patrick's Day 2012.
Jeremy Rees, 23, pleaded guilty in September to impaired driving causing death and leaving the scene of a crash in the fatal crash that killed 26-year-old Erin Vance.
Eight members of Vance's family were in attendance Wednesday including her brother Alex and her parents. Some members were fighting tears when Rees walked into the courtroom.
Rees wore a suit and tie and often held his head in his hands and sat slumped while in the courtroom.
Rees's defence lawyer, Paolo Giancaterino, recommended a sentence of three to four years in prison, citing his client's plea and remorse.
Rees read a statement to the court describing his guilt. He also said his "insides are torn up" since the crash.
"He has accepted responsibility for everything that he has done without any reservation or any type of excuse," Giancaterino said.
"That goes a long way. It saves the family a lot of heartache."
This is the cruelest joke that life could ever play.
The Crown recommended a six-year sentence and a 10-year ban from driving calling Rees's behaviour the night of the crash "reckless."
The court heard Rees was consuming alcohol over a 12-hour period and he might have been driving up to 60 km above the speed limit when he struck Vance.
Police also found open containers of alcohol in the vehicle, the court was told.
Remanded into custody
Rees was remanded into custody after the hearing, choosing to be jailed now because he has accepted his guilt, added Giancaterino.
Alex Vance delivered a victim impact statement at the hearing saying he has felt "sadness and anxiety he never would have imagined possible."
"This is the cruelest joke that life could ever play," Vance added.
Rees had surrendered to police one day after Vance, a mother of twin boys, was struck while walking along Bayview Drive in Constance Bay, Ont., about 30 km west of Ottawa, with her boyfriend and four other people.
Rees also admitted to driving the vehicle that struck Vance in a taped police interview, a court heard in March.
A friend and uncle of the victim told CBC News in March both the accused and Vance were sitting at the same table at a nearby bar called The Point, where they were partying for St. Patrick's Day.
The charge of criminal negligence causing death was withdrawn after the guilty plea.