Jared DeJong has pled guilty to charges of impaired driving causing death.
Back in October, the 24 year-old was originally charged with over 80 milligrams of alcohol in 100 milliletres of blood causing death, impaired driving causing death, and dangerous driving causing death.
“The dangerous driving charge has been changed to criminal negligence causing death, and with the way the legal system works, he cannot be charged with over 80 and impaired driving at the same time,” says DeJong’s lawyer Jim Dean.
Following his guilty plea, the Crown recounted what happened on the night of October 7, 2015.
DeJong was driving through Western’s campus when he jumped the curb and hit 19 year-old Andrea Christidis. The 1st year Western student was taken to hospital with severe injuries. She died in hospital just 2 days later.
The Crown said DeJong had 117 milligrams of alcohol in his blood or a blood alcohol level of .17. That’s over double the legal limit.
As the events were retold, DeJong could be seen holding his head in his hands, while friends and family of the victim shed tears, some even having to leave the courtroom.
“Nothing will ever bring my daughter back, but if severe and high punishments are given, maybe that will deter people from drinking and driving, says Georgia Christidis, the victim’s mother.
DeJong’s lawyer says he’s hoping for a fair sentence for both sides, one that’s fair to the victim’s family, as well as to DeJong in terms of rehabilitation.
The sentencing phase will begin on April 28, but the judge says a decision may not be handed down that day.
DeJong had no criminal record prior to this incident.