May 17th, 2008


On May 17, 2008 4 year-old Alexa Middelaer was killed by an impaired driver at 5 o’clock in the afternoon as she stood at the roadside while feeding treats to a horse with her aunt and grandparents.

Alexa’s aunt sustained serious injuries. Alexa’s grandparents who were sitting in a car nearby sustained minor injuries. The horse was also killed. Ironically the collision occurred on a day when the family had gathered to celebrate her older brother’s 8th birthday.

The driver involved was convicted of a number of criminal offences including impaired driving causing death.

After hearing Alexa’s mother, Laurel Middelaer, speak at the B.C.A.C.P. Traffic Safety Committee meeting, Inspector Emanuels approached the Executive Director of the British Columbia Automobile Association Road Safety Foundation (BCAA-RSF) with a proposal to increase public and police awareness of the impaired driving problem and challenge police officers in B.C. to increase the number of impaired drivers detected and charged with impaired driving offences.

The proposal was to create a process to have the BCAA-RSF recognize the top police impaired driving investigators. The police officers identified would be recognized as part of “Alexa’s Team.”

Inspector Emanuels entered into a partnership with the BCAA-RSF and Laurel and Michael Middelaer, and Alexa’s Team was created in Fall 2008.

The strategic goals of the Alexa’s Team Partnership are:

  • To increase the level of public awareness of the drug and alcohol impaired driving problem.
  • To motivate all B.C. police officers to make impaired driving investigations a priority.
  • To discourage impaired driving by increasing the public expectation of apprehension.
  • To increase the number of impaired drivers detected and apprehended.
  • To communicate to all levels of police management that impaired driving investigations should be an operational priority and to encourage supervisors to provide police officers with the time required to conduct a proper impaired driving investigation
  • To discourage the use of 24 Hour Prohibitions and Administrative Driving Prohibitions as alternatives to complete impaired driving investigations.
  • To recognize the top impaired driving investigators, both internally and publicly.
  • To engage road safety partners, including police, government and other agencies, in a collective program to reduce impaired driving deaths and injuries.

Source: RCMP Lower Mainland District BC Update 16 Feb 2012



Last updated on: 2020-07-09 | Link to this post