Father relieved by guilty plea in daughter's hit-and-run death

The father of a Kamloops teen killed in a 2016 hit and run is relieved the man charged in her death plans to enter a guilty plea.

‘It closes a chapter in my life and I can move on from this particular piece of my history,’ says Kamloops man

Jennifer Gatey was killed in a hit and run in November 2016 in Kamloops. (Facebook/Jenn Gatey)

Nearly a year and a half after the death of his daughter, Kamloops' Cameron Gatey is getting closure.

His 16-year-old daughter was killed in a hit and run crash on Pacific Way in November of 2016, hours before her 17th birthday. She was waiting at a bus stop near her home at the time of the collision.

Last week in court, lawyers in the case indicated Jason Gourlay would enter a guilty plea. 

Gourlay is charged with failure to stop at the scene of an accident and possession of heroin in connection to Jennifer Gatey's death.

"It closes a chapter in my life and I can move on from this particular piece of my history," said Gatey.

He says he wasn't interested in seeing Gourlay go through the court process in order to receive the maximum punishment.

"I've never been motivated by revenge or anything like that so it's not about seeing some sort of harsh penalty produced in this particular case."

Scholarship key to remembering Jennifer

He says it's about honouring Jennifer's legacy.

"I miss her terribly each and every day, but my thoughts are about Jennifer and the life that she might have had."

Since Jennifer's death, Gatey says community support has made a big difference to his family — especially the creation of a scholarship in her name.

"Education is a remarkable path to the future and the more young people that we can put through university and colleges, the better our world will be," he said.

"Jennifer can play a part in that. That will be part of her legacy I hope."

Gourlay is expected to enter a plea in court next week.

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About the Author

Jenifer Norwell

Digital Associate Producer

Jenifer Norwell has been working with CBC since 2008. She's worked in Prince George, Vancouver, Sudbury and now makes her home in her hometown of Kamloops. She works with CBC Kamloops and with Daybreak Kamloops. jenifer.norwell@cbc.ca