by Tony Blais
An Edmonton man who repeatedly rammed another man's vehicle while drunkenly pursuing him following a road rage incident was sentenced to six months in jail Monday.
Richard Douglas McKay, 43, had pleaded guilty in provincial court to dangerous driving, driving with a blood alcohol level of more than .08 and mischief.
McKay was also fined $1,500 and prohibited from driving for 18 months by Judge Donna Valgardson, who scolded him for putting "in danger" five people waiting at a bus stop who narrowly avoided being hit during the reckless ramming rampage.
Crown prosecutor Katherine Fraser told court the April 26 offences began about 6:30 p.m. with a reported road rage incident involving McKay's stepdaughter, Jennifer Sam, and motorist Ken Bulman.
Fraser said Bulman had been driving north on 92 Street, near 107 Avenue, when Sam cut him off. The pair ended up exchanging words and Bulman called police.
Before leaving the area, Bulman saw McKay drive up in his Toyota 4Runner and watched as he came up and punched his driver's side window, smashing the glass, said Fraser.
Court heard Bulman began following Sam's vehicle while speaking with police on his phone and then stopped when she parked in an alley. McKay then came up again to Bulman's vehicle and began swearing and hitting the vehicle with his fists.
Police officers could hear McKay striking the vehicle and told Bulman to drive away. Then, approaching officers who were responding to Bulman's call saw both vehicles going north on a service road beside 97 Street near 120 Avenue and watched McKay as he tried to ram Bulman off the road.
Fraser told court the officers witnessed repeated ramming attempts by McKay and "could detect fear" in Bulman's voice.
Court also heard McKay "narrowly" missed driving into a bus stop area on 97 Street near 122 Avenue where five people were standing.
McKay was arrested while walking over to Bulman's vehicle after both drivers had stopped and officers detected a heavy smell of alcohol on his breath. He later blew a blood alcohol reading of .12.
Defence lawyer Nicole Stewart acknowledged McKay has a dated criminal record with convictions for impaired driving and dangerous driving, but told court he said he is not an alcoholic and the incident was a "one-off" situation.
Stewart also told court that McKay had driven to the area, despite having been drinking, after Sam called him and said some guy was "following her and being creepy." Rather than calling police, he made the mistake of trying to deal with it himself, she said.