October 26th, 2020

Fatal drunk-driving case adjourned again


By Shurtz, Delon on December 11, 2019.

Delon Shurtz

Lethbridge Herald

dshurtz@lethbridgeherald.com

A 63-year-old Lethbridge man accused of killing a Piikani Nation councillor in a drunk-driving collision last year is expected to take a significant step in his case, but not until the new year.

Douglas Wilbur Bagnall was scheduled to be arraigned Monday in Lethbridge Court of Queen’s Bench, but instead of pleading to the charges of impaired driving, impaired driving causing death and dangerous driving, his case was adjourned to Jan. 13 when his lawyer is expected to schedule a date in the spring to finally resolve the matter.

Bagnall was committed to stand trial following a preliminary hearing in September in Lethbridge provincial court, and while it appeared the case was, after numerous delays, finally moving ahead, family members of Barnaby Provost said it was taking too long to see justice done.

Provost was killed in June 2018 after a vehicle driving on the wrong side of Highway 3 collided with his vehicle. Provost’s 12-year-old daughter was also in the vehicle and sustained minor injuries.

Bagnall wasn’t charged until November 2018, five months after the collision, and then he was released a few days later on $300 bail. He subsequently failed to show up for court and breached conditions of his bail – resulting in three breach charges – and was finally arrested again at a city hotel in January.

He pleaded guilty to the breach charges on Sept. 13 and was sentenced to 60 days in jail.

Edmonton lawyer William Taterchuk, who asked the judge to sentence his client to only 30 days in jail, said Bagnall suffers from memory loss and several mental health issues after years of alcohol abuse.

Bagnall also has an IQ of only 59.

The judge agreed with the Crown for 60 days in jail, but gave Bagnall credit for the equivalent of 60 days already spent in custody. Bagnall wasn’t released from custody, however, and remains in remand on the driving charges.

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