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Prosecutors first wanted to push for jail time for a man convicted of drunk driving after driving his vehicle into an SUV at a busy Sarnia intersection.

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“In my view, given the circumstances of this crime, that’s certainly within reason,” Judge Krista Lynn Leszczynski said in sentencing Jeremy Davis. “You are lucky, sir, that neither you nor (the victim) were seriously injured and that no one died as a result.”

The court heard that on October 3, 2019, Davis was driving south on Murphy Road in his gray Ford pickup truck while a woman in her gray Ford Escape stopped at a red light on Exmouth Street. A drunk Davis crashed into the back of their SUV.

“The force of the impact pushed her vehicle through the intersection,” Assistant District Attorney Meaghan Jones said.

Davis, who also hit a water pole after the first fall, was “extremely” unsteady on his feet, had slurred speech and smelled of alcohol, police noted. He was arrested and taken for tests which showed he had between 250 and 270 milligrams of alcohol in 100 milliliters of blood.

“More than three times the legal limit,” emphasized Leszczynski.

The woman, who complained of neck pain and was “very” sore, was taken to hospital by paramedics. She was diagnosed with whiplash and put on a neck brace, but eventually recovered.

Davis, 35, pleaded guilty Tuesday to Zoom from defense attorney James Guggisberg’s office of exceeding the legal limit within two hours of driving.

Assistant prosecutor Meaghan Jones said they would initially seek jail time because of the “substantial” damage, the injury to the woman and the “very” high readings. Instead, both sides proposed a fine of between $2,700 and $3,000 and a two-year driving ban.

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Although the Crown’s stance changed from being behind bars to a hefty fine, the judge said she accepted the changed position based on a “number” of factors but ended up with the highest proposed fine.

Davis told the judge he was going through “a lot” at the time.

“It’s not an apology or anything. I made a very terrible mistake and impacted someone’s life very badly,” he said. “I’m very, very sorry. I really regret that night.”

“I hope for you and for the others that you have learned your lesson from this,” she replied.

Another charge was dropped.

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