Convicted drunk driver Cory Sater arrives for sentencing at New Westminster Supreme Court in New Westminster, BC., May 1, 2014. Sater has been convicted of dangerous driving in the death of two women. One was a mom of four young kids who stopped to help another driver

An impaired hit-and-run driver who killed two women and maimed a man for life was sentenced on Thursday to seven and one-half years in jail.

Cory Sater, 40, sobbed upon hearing the sentence. Sater, who arrived at court carrying a Bible and said "this book will save your life," was handcuffed and led away to the cells.

Outside court, some relatives of his three victims — mother of four Charlene Reaveley, Lorraine Cruz, who were both killed, and Paulo Calimbahin, who lost a leg — said they had hoped for a longer sentence.

Others, including Reaveley's widower, Dan, said they were satisfied with Sater's jail term.

"It doesn't make any difference," he said.

"It won't bring Charlene back," said her mother, Mary Ogilvie.

"It's a significant penalty for these offences," said Crown prosecutor Christopher McPherson, who had sought eight to nine years and was satisfied with the sentence.

Defence lawyer Rishi Gill, who had sought a jail term of three to four years, said, "It was a difficult case and a difficult sentence."

He said it wasn't appropriate to discuss the possibility of appeal.

In his written judgment, which took an hour to read in New Westminster B.C. Supreme Court on Thursday, Judge James Williams said the main objectives of the sentence is denunciation and deterrence.

He said the accident represented "an incredible shameful waste of humanity.

"These were good, decent people who were greatly valued and loved by others," he said.

But he said the sentence is not meant to compensate losses or exact revenge.

"The lost lives will be not be restored," he said.

And he said people will leave the courtroom with a "sense of sorrow, sadness and waste," adding that the "impact of the damage extends to Mr. Sater," who is the single father of two.

But Williams noted Sater's "moral culpability is very high."

Sater made a decision to drive his vehicle that night, knowing he didn't have a licence, after drinking eight drinks, including six double highballs, in a bar before being cut off by staff.

Sater, was convicted in January of two counts of impaired driving causing death, impaired driving causing bodily harm, two counts of dangerous driving causing death and dangerous driving causing bodily harm. He pleaded guilty to leaving an accident scene.

The maximum sentence for leaving a scene and the offences causing death is life in prison.

Shortly before 12:30 a.m. on the night of the crash, Charlene and Dan Reaveley and close friends Kimberley and Giacomo deBenedictis were on their way home from an evening out when they saw a Nissan Pathfinder spin out and crash on Lougheed Highway at Pitt River Road in Coquitlam.

The Reaveleys and Giacomo deBenedictis ran to help while Kimberley deBenedictis called 911. They helped Lorraine Cruz and her boyfriend Paulo Calimbahin out of their damaged vehicle. Neither was hurt.

Moments later, Sater's Jeep Cherokee side-swiped the Pathfinder and hit Charlene, Cruz and Calimbahin at between 44 and 64 km/h before driving away.

Source: The Vancouver Sun


Last updated on: 2014-05-04 | Link to this post