A drunk driver who hit a passenger who had just gotten out of his vehicle was jailed for four months in Sarnia court.
The 58 years of age driver, of Walpole Island, had previously pleaded guilty to impaired driving and failing to stop at an accident. However, his sentencing had been delayed until Tuesday.
The passenger who was struck suffered minor injuries during the Nov. 24, 2011 collision.
The driver had given the person a ride, but during the drop-off, he reversed the vehicle while the door was open striking the passenger.
“I wanted to get rid of the guy — he was punching me in the head,” said the driver, explaining the reason for the quick back-up.
The driver left the scene but was arrested later. His blood-alcohol level was approximately three times the legal limit.
The driver had three prior drinking-and-driving convictions, but the first one was 26 years ago making the minimum jail sentence of 120 days appropriate, said defence lawyer Robert McFadden.
The passenger suffered “very minor injuries,” but the driver blood alcohol level was three times the legal limit and an open alcohol container was found at his feet, said assistant Crown attorney Aniko Coughlan.
The aggravating sentencing factor of the passenger being struck and the driver extremely high blood-alcohol level had to be balanced with the mitigating factor of his guilty plea, said Justice Anne McFadyen.
In addition to the jail time, the driver was placed on 18 months probation. A five-year driving ban was also imposed.