Cochrane's Kim Thomas lost her beloved son, Brandon, to the actions of an alleged impaired driver the evening of December 6, 2012, on Hwy 22, 3 km south of Cochrane.

Every day is a chore to get through for Kim and her family since Brandon was taken after just 17 years of life.

Thomas has joined "Families For Justice" in taking a petition to the federal government with hopes of introducing stiffer sentences for drunk drivers who take lives.

Ryan Jordan Gibson, 22 years of age, from Calgary, was arrested by Cochrane RCMP at the scene and charged with 6 offences.

Not sitting well with Thomas is the fact that Gibson's preliminary hearing has been set for January 6, 2014 - being so far away and 13 months to the day that Brandon was killed.

Michelle Davio, with Alberta Justice and the Solicitor General, said the time lag between the incident and the preliminary hearing is nothing out the ordinary.

“Ten months for setting a three-day (preliminary hearing) on a very serious file is not unusual in most circumstances,” Davio said.

That does nothing to console a mother who just wants her son back.

(L-R) Brandon's sister Kayla, Brandon, and mom - Kim Thomas.

The “Families for Justice” group consists of 40-plus families whose lives have been forever changed by impaired drivers in some way.

The group offers support and understanding to those who are grieving and feel an intense sense of loss. They are also working to have the Canadian government introduce stronger sentencing laws and convictions for those who've caused a vehicular homicide.

With this petition, the group wants to see a mandatory minimum sentence for impaired driving causing death. They also want the Criminal Code of Canada to redefine the offence of impaired driving causing death, by changing it to vehicular manslaughter.

View the petition here.

Thomas emphasizes that despite reports she's heard indicating the petition wouldn't be accepted by the federal government if it asked for more than a sentence of five years, the group will push for more.

Sadly, she says, even if it is accepted, it'll have no bearing on her son's case.

Recently, Thomas recieved a letter from Wildrose MP Blake Richards and a personal phone call from MP for MacLeod, Ted Menzies, both showing support for the petition.

Source: Discover Airdrie


Last updated on: 2013-03-20 | Link to this post