A woman who believed she could stay out of trouble by riding an e-bike was still a disqualified driver and was jailed for 68 days on Monday.
The 40 years old, of Petrolia, pleaded guilty in Sarnia court to driving while disqualified on Aug. 15, 2012 and on Sept. 8, 2013, along with failing to attend court this past June 30.
The female driver had no driver’s licence due to unpaid fines and a 2010 impaired driving conviction. Her record also included a 2011 conviction for driving while disqualified.
On Aug. 15, 2012, Hardy was driving a typical vehicle while disqualified. On Sept. 8, 2013, she was riding an e-bike and was arrested for the same offence.
Prior to convicting her for the Sept. 8 offence, Justice Mark Hornblower said he wanted to be satisfied that the e-bike was a vehicle.
The Criminal Code definition of a vehicle covers e-bikes, said assistant Crown attorney Nick Cake.
No licence is required to operate an e-bike.
A sales person had told the female driver that riding an e-bike would keep her safe from breaking the law and that she was making an effort to comply with the law, said defence lawyer James Guggisberg.
There was a joint submission by Crown and defence lawyers for a 98-day sentence, including eight days already served in pre-sentence custody for the female driver for, failing to attend court.
Guggisberg and Cake said they would defer to Hornblower’s sentencing decision.
Jail time was warranted for the two driving convictions, but 90 days exceeded what was appropriate for Hardy. who had been looking to comply with the law by switching to an e-bike, said Hornblower.
She will serve the time on Sundays and Mondays so she can continue working.