Charges laid after driver caught on camera cutting off motorcyclist
Published Thursday, September 1, 2016 1:37PM EDT
An SUV driver in Ottawa who was caught on camera using her cellphone while driving and then attempting to cut off a motorcyclist is now facing charges.
The Ottawa Police Service says the woman has been charged with careless driving, distracted driving, and failure to notify change of address.
The charges stem from an incident last Friday, which motorcyclist Erik Hanna recorded on this helmet cam.
Hanna was driving through the city that day when he saw an SUV with Newfoundland licence plates stopped far back from the stop line at a traffic light. He pulled up to the driver’s window and noticed the driver was looking at her phone.
The same thing happened again at the next light. So he decided to tap on her window and remind her not to use her phone while driving – a warning he says he often gives to drivers.
The woman pretended to ignore him, although the video shows her locking her doors. Eventually, Hanna pulled ahead and continued on his way. But moments later, the same SUV came up dangerously close beside him and pulled into his lane, coming within inches of hitting his bike.
They later exchanged words at another intersection, with the woman demanding of Hanna: “Don’t you have anything better to do?”
Hanna filed a report with Ottawa police on Saturday morning. And after he posted the video to Facebook, it quickly racked up tens of thousands of views.
Police called the video troubling, but warned that drivers should not follow drivers when they see them committing an offence. Instead, they should note the driver's description, the licence plate, and location, and then call police.
Police said Thursday Hanna will not be facing charges.
The SUV driver, who has not been identified, faces hefty fines if convicted of the charges against her. She also could receive six demerit points on her licence for a careless driving conviction and three for a distracted driving conviction.