Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

Driver pleads guilty to drunk driving in deadly crash

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A motorist who struck and killed a young West St. Paul man in an impaired-driving crash has pleaded guilty.

Brad Skawretko, 34, admitted today he was driving his truck while over the legal limit of .08 and caused the death of Brett Yasinsky, 22 on Nov. 10, 2010.

Yasinsky was just on his way to the movies when a crash at Grassmere Road and McPhillips Street ended his life, his family has said. He had left home just minutes earlier.

Skawretko wasn't charged until September 2011, nearly a year after the fatal collision. He was committed to stand trial on several charges after a preliminary inquiry in November 2012.

Skawretko said he was giving up his right to challenge issues that may have existed in the case against him.

Defence lawyer Josh Weinstein told court a blood sample had expired, there were potential legal problems with the breath demand made by RCMP and that Skawretko's level of intoxication may have been affected by an anti-anxiety medication in his system.

No facts of the case were revealed today by prosecutors, and sentencing was put off until later this year. Skawretko remains free on release conditions.

There is no joint recommendation between the Crown and Weinstein on what punishment Skawretko should receive, court heard.

Yasinsky's mother has spoken out several times regarding the crash in hopes of preventing similar deaths.

"My son was a kind young man and an old soul; he was my rock," Connie Jaman told the Free Press in December, just as drunk-driving awareness, prevention and enforcement campaigns kicked into high gear for the festive season.

"I miss him more than I can find the words to say."

The Crown dropped a dangerous driving charge after Skawretko entered his plea.

 

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