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Concrete truck driver gets 8 years in jail for killing 5 in Calgary

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by Richard Gilbert last update:Nov 3, 2009

A concrete truck driver has been sentenced to eight years in jail for killing five people when he ran into the back of a car at a Calgary intersection.

Law

A concrete truck driver has been sentenced to eight years in jail for killing five people when he ran into the back of a car at a Calgary intersection.

Daniel Tschetter drove his concrete truck into the back of a car, which had stopped at the 194th Avenue S.E./Macleod Trail intersection, in 2007.

Witnesses testified they saw no brake lights when the truck plowed into the back of a car.

The crash dragged the victims’ car almost three football fields from the point of impact.

The car ended up lodged under the bigger vehicle. All five occupants of the car were killed, including three children.

After a manslaughter conviction earlier this year, Provincial court Judge Bruce Fraser sentenced Tschetter, 51, to eight years in prison.

But he will serve five-and-a-half years in jail, taking into account time already served and other conditions.

Tschetter has been banned for life from driving any commercial vehicle requiring a Class One license and is banned from driving any vehicle for five years after his release. He is also banned from owning firearms and must submit a DNA sample.

The court heard that Tschetter was driving recklessly, passing other vehicles on the shoulder of the road and he may have reached speeds up to 140 km/h before the accident.

Witnesses said Tschetter threw a vodka bottle into the hopper of his concrete truck right after the crash and refused a breath test. At the scene of the crash, Tschetter showed no remorse.

The defence told the court that Tschetter was angry and irritated on the day of the crash.

According to the judge, Tschetter showed no concern for the victims, only himself. He examined his truck more than the victim’s vehicle.

Court heard that Tschetter took a drink from an open bottle of vodka in his truck by acccident, thinking it was water.

He attempted to destroy the evidence of his drinking, by throwing the vodka bottle in the hopper of the truck.

He then phoned his employer to advise him of the collision and gave a false story to deflect the blame.

The Crown argued Tschetter should be sentenced to between 10 and 15 years. The defence was asking for probation and house arrest.

last update:Nov 3, 2009

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