Court Report

Refusing alcohol test a crime

Slave Lake
Provincial Court
January 12, 2022
Judge M. B. Golden

Vanessa Orr (37), of Slave Lake, was not present, but her lawyer entered a guilty plea on her behalf to refusing to provide a breath sample for alcohol impairment. The Crown withdrew charges and a ticket.

On May 5, 2021, at 5:22 p.m., the Slave Lake RCMP were called out to investigate a frivolous 911 call, said the Crown. The caller didn’t give a reason for the call and hung up shortly after making it. However, the operator did hear her say in the background, ‘he told me to *@#$ off.’ The RCMP contacted the number but didn’t receive a response. They staked out Orr’s home to try and find out the reason for her call.

While they were there, Orr drove up, the court heard. She stumbled out of her vehicle. The officer approached her to ask about the call. She did not answer the question, but what she did say was slurred. Her breath also smelled like alcohol. The officer requested that she provide a breath sample. She refused and continued to walk toward the residence.

This is Orr’s first criminal conviction.

Orr is a member of Bigstone Cree Nation, said the Crown. She works as a healthcare aid. She is addicted to alcohol. The pandemic has increased her dependence on alcohol. She’s seeking help with her addiction.

Orr received the minimum penalty – a $2,000-fine and one-year driving prohibition. She received time to pay until June 30, 2022. She is eligible to apply for the Interlock system. If she doesn’t pay the fine, she’ll have to spend time in jail.

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