Diallo 'innocent' lawyers say on final day of Westboro bus crash trial
OTTAWA -- Aissatou Diallo's lawyers say what happened at Westboro station in January 2019 was a tragic accident that could have happened to anyone.
"Factors far beyond her control conspired together and they lead to a tragic result," Soloman Friedman told court. "In our law, tragic results are not automatically punished by criminal liability."
The defence said Diallo, who has pleaded not guilty to three counts of dangerous driving causing death and 35 counts of dangerous driving causing bodily harm, was misled by lane markings on the road left over from construction which they say explains why she veered to the right before the bus slammed into two snowbanks, a rockface and then the shelter.
"There's no question at that point the sun is bright. It's blinding, it's directly in front of her," Friedman said.
In its submissions, the Crown said Diallo never braked or steered away.
"Recovery in that ice and snow-covered gutter would be difficult if not impossible," Friedman said, adding Diallo did try to steer away but didn't brake because she was taught not to under those conditions.
The Crown also contends Diallo wasn't paying attention, was speeding and didn't have control of the bus. Diallo's lawyer said while speed isn't irrelevant, "there's no legal speed limit on the Transitway."
"At the time Ms. Diallo was trained there was no formal approach to…ensure you got sufficient training on the type of bus that you would be driving more often," Friedman said of her training.
Friedman also said there's no evidence of distracted driving and that Diallo is "not just not guilty, she's innocent."
A date for the judge to deliver his verdict will be set on July 26.