Almost two months after three young men perished in an alcohol related motor vehicle accident outside of Beaumont, the Leduc RCMP have charged the 28-year-old driver of the Dodge Ramp pickup truck with three separate counts of criminal charges.

Johnathan Robert Pratt of Beaumont is facing three counts of impaired operation causing death, three counts of driving while over the legal blood alcohol limit of 0.08 mg causing death and three counts of manslaughter.

The accused was taken into custody on Jan. 13 after being released from the hospital where he sustained life-threatening injuries from the two-car collision on Nov. 26.

Pratt was charged almost two months after the collision, because of the injuries he received from the accident, explained Const. Jodi Heidinger, who met with media on Jan. 16.

“The accused was severely injured because of the collision and will have a long road of recovery ahead of him. He is still in serious condition, but was released from the hospital and was subsequently remanded in custody.”

Details surrounding what caused the accident are not being released by the RCMP and will come up in court proceedings as they happen, said Heidinger.

Pratt made his first appearance in Leduc Provincial Court on Thursday, Jan. 19. At the time of press, it is not known what occurred at his first appearance.

The charges, especially the manslaughter counts Pratt is facing arising from the investigation are unusual when it comes to impaired driving incidents, but due to the result of the accident they were warranted.

“Manslaughter is not a typical charge in a fatal, impaired collision, but after the investigation was completed it was found they were appropriate,” added Heidinger.

The accident

18-year-olds Bradley Arsenault and Kole Novak, both from Beaumont, along with 22-year-old Thaddeus Lake of Leduc, were all killed instantly in the two-vehicle collision that occurred on Highway 625 just outside of Beaumont in the early morning hours on Saturday, Nov. 26.

The three young men were all travelling in the Pontiac Grand Am involved, while Pratt was driving the Dodge Ram pickup truck.

Police responded to a report of a single vehicle accident at around 2:45 a.m. at the south edge of Beaumont, west of the intersection of Highway 625 and 60 Street.

When the police arrived at the scene, they found a Dodge Ram pick-up truck in the south ditch of the highway and the Grand Am was found immediately west of where the pick-up truck landed.

Police believe both vehicles involved in the crash were travelling eastbound and struck each other before they went off the road.

Two of the young men were thrown from the Grand Am and the third was pulled from the wreckage.

Source: The Beaumont News


Last updated on: 2012-07-10 | Link to this post