Sask. woman wins legal battle against drug dealer
A Saskatchewan woman who says she nearly died from an overdose of crystal meth is claiming a legal victory over the man she claims sold her the street drug.
Sandra Bergen was suing Clinton Davey, but earlier this month a Saskatoon judge struck down his statement of defence after he failed to answer questions in a legal proceeding.
That means Davey is not in a position to dispute liability and the case will go back to court to determine damages, Bergen's lawyer Stuart Busse said.
Bergen says her win may be by default, but she'll take it.
"He can't go to court now and say 'I'm not responsible,'" she said Tuesday.
Bergen said after she overdosed on the drug in May 2004, she nearly died of a heart attack. Then 19 years old, she spent 11 days in a coma and was left with a number of long-term physical ailments.
Bergen and her parents filed their lawsuit for negligence more than two years ago, but in examinations for discovery Davey would not say where he got the drugs.
And so, with Davey's consent, the judge threw out Davey's defence.
A court date to discuss damages hasn't been set yet, Busse said.
The exact amount they'll be seeking hasn't been calculated, but it will be in excess of $50,000, Busse said.
Busse said the case sets a precedent in that it lets people know they can sue in such circumstances. The case hasn't been heard in a criminal court.
Bergen said cash in her pocket is not really what she was after — she just wanted to show drug dealers that they stand to lose whatever they have now.
"You know, it's a lot bigger than me," she said. "And it's a lot bigger than this particular drug dealer."
In the meantime, Bergen is putting her life back together, telling her story through a website and speaking to students and young people, with hopes of saving them from the agony she has been through.
Davey wasn't available for comment on Tuesday.