EDMONTON: Sivakumar Devarajah convicted of impaired driving causing death
An Edmonton man who fatally struck an elderly woman in a west-end crosswalk was convicted Monday of impaired driving causing death.
Sivakumar Devarajah, 55, was also found guilty of driving over .08 causing death in connection with the Feb. 4, 2013, collision that killed Agnes Morgan, 77.
Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Donald Manderscheid ruled that Devarajah’s driving was “negligent and faulty” and said his impairment by alcohol at the time was a “significant” cause of the deadly collision.
Manderscheid rejected Devarajah’s claim that the blinding sun had blocked his view of Morgan as she began walking through the crosswalk, saying others were able to see the senior and noting he had failed to lower his visor.
Crown prosecutor Kim Goddard told court she would be seeking a sentence of four to five years in prison.
Court has heard Devarajah was in a Ford F-150 pickup truck stopped at a red light on 110 Avenue at the intersection of 156 Street and waiting to turn left to go south.
Eyewitness Jaret Pollard testified he was driving beside Devarajah and saw him as he began turning before waiting for oncoming traffic to go through and “hit the lady.”
Pollard also testified he had seen Morgan as she stepped off the curb and began walking east through the crosswalk and said he then saw her lying bleeding on the road.
Pollard told court Devarajah approached him as he called 911 and ran over to help her and said his eyes were red and he could smell booze on his breath.
Witness Denis Moreau testified he saw Devarajah hit the pedestrian with his front bumper, sending the senior through the air approximately two metres, and described him as a “sloppy driver” who “didn’t stop at all.”
Court also heard Devarajah told police he had been going home after attending a Super Bowl party and initially said he had drank two beers, but then changed it to four.
His blood-alcohol readings were double the legal limit.