Man charged with impaired driving causing death in St. John’s banned from driving while case being heard

Rosie Mullaley rmullaley@thetelegram.com
Published on November 14, 2013
Terri-lee Coates poses with a car that belonged to her brother, Nick Coates. The car was fixed up for the show by Nick’s friends. Nick Coates, 27, of Conception Bay South was killed by an allegedly drunk driver Aug. 16 while riding his motorcycle on Kenmount Road in St. John's. Ronald Thistle, 65, is charged in the death. — File photo by Wendy Rose/Special to The Telegram

The man accused of hitting and killing a motorcyclist three months ago will be banned from driving for however long it takes to deal with his case.

When the case of Ronald Thistle, 65, was called in provincial court in St. John’s today, defence lawyer Bob Simmonds told the court they would not be opposing the Crown's application for the driving ban.

When the case was in court last month, prosecutor Phil LeFeuvre had indicated the Crown would be filing an application to change Thistle’s release conditions to reflect that.

Thistle, who was not in court today, has been charged with impaired driving causing death and having a blood-alcohol level above the legal limit causing death.

Under the law, when someone is charged with these type of offences, a person can have their driving privileges back after 90 days but lose them again if convicted of the charges.

However, LeFeuvre wanted the 90-day period extended.

Thistle is now banned from consuming alcohol and was ordered not to drive.

The case is due back in court Dec. 5.

Thistle, who lives in the Kilbride area of St. John's, was arrested as a result of a motor vehicle collision Aug. 16 in the capital city.

Thistle was said to have been driving a pickup when he pulled out of Polina Road onto Kenmount Road, causing an east-bound motorcycle to crash into the side of Thistle's truck.

The motorcycle driver, 27-year-old Nicholas Coates, was rushed to hospital, but later died from his injuries.

A number of Coates’ family members were in court today.