Vaughan Tragedy Shows Stiffer Penalties Needed For Impaired Driving

By Albert Conforzi | September 30, 2015

In the wake of a tragic accident in Ontario this past Sunday that saw three children and a grandfather killed by a drunk driver, we find a woman in Nova Scotia being sentenced for driving drunk with her kids in the car:

A Cole Harbour mother has been sentenced to nine months in jail for driving while heavily impaired with her children in the car.

Jennifer Ann Sims, 38, blew more than five times the legal limit on the breathalyzer after RCMP arrested her on the Forest Hills Parkway in Cole Harbour on April 6, 2014.

Sims, who has three previous convictions for drunk driving, pleaded guilty this spring to charges of impaired driving, driving while disqualified and breaching probation…

“I’m not confident that she would not reoffend,” the judge said Monday.

“Courts cannot wait until Ms. Sims kills somebody to send her a message, and others in the community, that this type of conduct is not acceptable and must be denounced.”

Three previous offenses? No wonder there are calls for stiffer penalties that include jail time. Clearly the message of “don’t drink and drive” isn’t getting through.


As for the alleged offender in the Vaughan case, he doesn’t have a history of driving drunk, although he does have prior speeding, electronic device use in the car, and drunk and disorderly charges. He is now charged with 18 offences in connection with this crash. I expect that the Crown will try hard to make an example out of this case.

My thoughts and prayers are with the grieving family.