Extending the Time Limit for a Blood Sample Warrant Act (Helen's Law)

An Act to amend the Criminal Code (warrant to obtain blood sample)

Sponsor

Kennedy Stewart  NDP

Introduced as a private member’s bill. (These don’t often become law.)

Status

Introduced, as of May 30, 2016

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Summary

This is from the published bill. The Library of Parliament often publishes better independent summaries.

This enactment amends the Criminal Code to extend the period of time during which a warrant to obtain blood samples may be issued from four to six hours after the commission of the offence.

Elsewhere

All sorts of information on this bill is available at LEGISinfo, provided by the Library of Parliament. You can also read the full text of the bill.

Extending the Time Limit for a Blood Sample Warrant Act (Helen's Law)Routine Proceedings

May 30th, 2016 / 3:10 p.m.
See context

NDP

Kennedy Stewart NDP Burnaby South, BC

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-276, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (warrant to obtain blood sample).

Mr. Speaker, I am proud today to introduce a private member's bill, Helen's law, which proposes to amend the Criminal Code of Canada.

On February 28, 2005, Helen Sonja Francis, a registered nurse from Burnaby, B.C. and a single mother of two, was tragically killed in a car accident involving an impaired driver. Due to a power outage that day, a warrant to obtain a blood sample from the perpetrator was signed 13 minutes after the current 4-hour time limit contained in the Criminal Code. As a result, all of the evidence collected was ruled inadmissible in court and Helen and her family were denied justice.

For over 10 years now, Helen's brother, George Sojka, has tirelessly called on the government to fix our criminal justice system and gathered hundreds upon hundreds of signatures on a petition to Parliament. Helen's law would do exactly that by extending the time limit to obtain a blood sample warrant from four to six hours following an accident causing death where drug or alcohol consumption is suspected.

It is a straightforward, long overdue change, and I hope the government will consider it.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)