A Langley, B.C., man involved in a deadly road rage incident was found guilty of three charges, including criminal negligence causing death, on Thursday morning in B.C. Supreme Court in New Westminster.
Justice Terence Schultes also found Brent Parent, 42, guilty of failing to remain at the scene of the crime and dangerous operation of a motor vehicle in the death of Silas O'Brien, 21, in March 2008.
O'Brien was hit by a vehicle around 2 a.m. PT on a rural road in Langley, east of Vancouver. During the trial, O'Brien's friends testified they were first run off the road by another vehicle, which then returned and ran down O'Brien as he stood in the road.
Parent had testified he didn't know he had hit O'Brien until the morning after the incident.
Man died during 'aggressive' driving
In his oral ruling, Schultes said he believed Parent's evidence that he didn't know he had struck O'Brien, and that he didn't mean to hit a person with his pickup truck.
But the judge said, based on evidence from other witnesses including a Good Samaritan who had stopped to see if O'Brien and friends were OK, that Parent had swerved toward the young men, intending to be "aggressive."
The judge also concluded that O'Brien was struck during that swerve.
Parent had testified during his trial that he was only angling his truck toward the trio to shine lights on them and see if they were all right. He said when he saw them waving arms and behaving aggressively, he left, out of concern for his own safety.
But the judge found Parent, who was in his truck with his brother, had no credible threat to his safety.
Schultes stayed one charge of dangerous driving causing death because it was redundant, and found Parent not guilty of failure to stop at an accident causing bodily harm.
Outside the courthouse, O'Brien's parents said they were pleased with the verdict.
Sentencing will begin April 27.