Western News file photo

Sentencing delayed for B.C. woman caught vaginally smuggling drugs

Judge doesn’t like sentence proposed for Penticton woman who evaded RCMP

An Okanagan judge did not like the proposed sentence for a woman who had meth, heroin and cocaine hidden inside her body when she took Penticton RCMP on an 18 minute chase and evaded three spike belts.

Judge Gregory Koturbash was presented the jointly proposed sentence by the Crown and the defence counsel for Bree-Anne Alicia Buhler. However, he said it needed further examining as he was “uncomfortable” with the 180 days, plus 30 days to be served consecutively that they were pitching. Also proposed is a one year driving prohibition and the same amount of time on probation.

READ MORE: Wanted man crashes vehicle into a truck, continues to evade RCMP

“She had a full pharmacy on board in her vagina … all of this is clearly dangerous. This is over the top aggravating circumstances,” said Koturbash.

Buhler, 25, was spotted driving erratically around 1:45 p.m. on Nov.6, 2018 in a Ford truck stolen from Kaleden. She evaded RCMP spike belts near Westhills Road and on Forsyth Drive in the West Bench.

READ MORE: RCMP helicopter called in to help track down suspected stolen vehicle in Okanagan

Police then set up another spike belt that she drove around before meeting a roadblock at Green Mountain Road and Westhills Road. She came to a stop before the area RCMP had set up a fourth spike belt and as an RCMP officer began walking towards her vehicle, instructing her to exit, she took off again. This time her front tire hit the spike belt and RCMP engaged the emergency lights on their vehicle as they followed her reaching speeds of up to 100 kilometres per hour.

READ MORE: Woman in custody as RCMP investigate reckless driving near Peachland

Crown counsel Ann Lerchs told the court that Buhler continued to drive, sometimes occupying the entire opposing lane, on a deflating tire. It finally completely disintegrated near Shingle Creek Road where RCMP arrested her.

Buhler was transported from the Penticton RCMP detachment where she began to vomit. She was taken to the hospital as she appeared to be overdosing. A CT scan showed several packages of drugs in her vagina including 1.63 grams of heroin, .95 grams of heroin, 1.54 grams of meth and 1.2 grams of meth and 1.32 grams of cocaine.

READ MORE: Penticton man apprehended with stolen vehicle after ramming police vehicles

RCMP found a baggie and a scale on the front passenger seat of the stolen vehicle and 3.87 grams of heroin.

Koturbash commented that Buhler had been on probation at the time of the offences, which include flight from a peace officer, dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, possession of a controlled substance, possession of stolen property and driving while prohibited. He has previously been outspoken in court about the growing number of flight from police officer offences that are coming before him.

“While I appreciate that perhaps we haven’t reached an epidemic problem with respect to police chases but they are becoming a lot more common. Evading the police, fleeing with drugs in your system, engaging in pursuits — all of which are extremely dangerous for our community,” said Koturbash.

He asked for case law to be presented to support Crown and defence submission and to meet with the trial co-ordinator on April 15 to fix a date to present it to him.

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.


@PentictonNews
newstips@pentictonwesternnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Editorial: Byelection riding boundaries are simpler this time

Nanaimo-Ladysmith byelection will be held May 6 to choose a new MP for the riding

Departure Bay Eco-School students calling for old cellphones

Grade 7 students at Nanaimo school taking part in Recycle My Cell Earth Month Challenge

RDN to share cost of Parksville’s goose harvest

City asked regional district to pay one-third of $35K expense

Woman who was chased and tackled by break-and-enter victim sentenced in Nanaimo court

Natasha Geraldine Harris, 28, was sentenced to time served and will be released from jail

Health minister talks opioid crisis in campaign stop in Nanaimo

Support of cabinet ministers ‘incredible’ experience, says Liberal candidate

VIDEO: Driver in bizarre hit-and-run at B.C. car dealership turns herself in

Police believe alcohol was a factor in incident causing estimated $15,000 in damages

First Nanaimo-Ladysmith all-candidates’ meeting is today

Six candidates expected to debate issues Thursday, April 25, at the Beban Park social centre

B.C., Ottawa talk 50/50 split on abandoned bus-route service

B.C. has paid $2 million on a bus service for the northern part of the province

‘B.C. cannot wait for action’: Top doctor urges province to decriminalize illicit drugs

Dr. Bonnie Henry says current approach in ‘war on drugs’ has criminalized and stigmatized drug users

B.C. woman, 76, challenges alcohol-screening laws after failing to give breath sample

Norma McLeod was unable to provide a sample because of her medical conditions

New report on 2017 wildfires calls for better coordination with B.C. First Nations

Tsilhqot’in National Government documents 2017 disaster and lists 33 calls to action

B.C. youth coach banned amid sexual harassment, bullying scandal: Water Polo Canada

Justin Mitchell can’t take part in Water Polo Canada events or clubs

Wilson-Raybould: Feds want to just ‘manage the problem’ of Indigenous Peoples

Former federal justice minister speaks at First Nations Justice Council meeting in B.C.

Nanaimo Astronomy Society already anticipating next moon mission

Society’s next meeting is on Thursday, April 25, at Beban Park social centre

Most Read