Skip to comments.British Columbia Premier Apologizes For Drunk Driving Charge in Hawaii
Posted on 01/10/2003 6:40:46 PM PST by Loyalist
B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell earlier this year. (CP/Ian McKain)
VICTORIA (CP) - B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell apologized Friday to his family, friends and "the people of British Columbia" after he was charged with drunk driving in Hawaii.
"Last night I was returning home from dinner with friends and the Maui police pulled me over," he said in a statement issued from his office. "I was arrested and charged with driving a vehicle under the influence of alcohol. I do not intend to contest the charge."
Maui police Sgt. Ken Prather said Campbell, 54, was arrested at 1:23 a.m.
Campbell was fingerprinted and photographed before he posted bail of $257, police said.
A tentative court date of March 25 was set, Prather said in a telephone interview.
Campbell regularly spends several weeks each year Christmas season at a condominium on the Hawaiian resort island of Maui with family and friends.
Drivers in Hawaii face charges of driving under the influence when they are suspected of driving with a blood-alcohol concentration level above .08 per cent.
First offences are deemed petty misdemeanours that include a maximum five-day jail term and fines ranging from $150 to $1,000.
Convicted drivers could also be forced to participate in a 14-hour alcohol counselling program or complete up to 240 hours of community services.
Convicted drivers could also lose their driver's licence for 90 days.
Norman Ruff, a University of Victoria political expert, said Campbell can still perform his duties despite the charge.
"In the short run the charge will, rightly or wrongly, be a cloud over him as an individual," Ruff said. "There's nothing that directly impinges on his office as premier, but we'll have to see how it plays out."
British Columbia MLA Tony Bhullar has been suspended from the Liberal caucus for more than a year awaiting the outcome of criminal charges following a disturbance at his mother's home.
Campbell is the latest in a string of recent B.C. premiers and former premiers to face legal troubles.
NDP premier Glen Clark was forced to resign in 1999 after it was revealed he was under investigation over a provisional casino licence issued to a neighbour and friend.
Clark was acquitted last year of accepting a benefit but the province's conflict commissioner ruled he had breached two sections of B.C.'s Members' Conflict of Interest Act. He was ordered to pay $53,000, half of the costs of the conflict probe.
Social Credit premier Bill Vander Zalm was forced to resign in 1991 under another conflict accusation. It was alleged he had used his office to help engineer the sale of his Fantasy Garden religious theme park to a Taiwanese billionaire.
While the provincial conflict commissioner ruled against him, Vander Zalm was also acquitted of charges with the judge calling his actions foolish but not criminal.
Vander Zalm's predecessor also dodged a criminal conviction for insider trading after he left office.
Bill Bennett, his brother Russell and forest company owner Herb Doman were accused of conspiring to dump half a million Doman Industry shares in 1988 before an announcement that Doman's planned $250-million sellout to a U.S. forest giant had fallen through.
Minutes after the shares were sold, the price plunged as news of the takeover failure was made public.
Doman and the Bennetts were acquitted in 1989 but a drawn-out proceeding before the B.C. Securities Commission resulted in fines, trading bans and other sanctions against the three.
Former NDP premier Mike Harcourt resigned in 1995 over a charity-skimming scandal that became known as Bingogate. Harcourt said he was not involved in the scandal, but quit to take the heat for past NDP members who used charity money to build a party slush fund.
Last November, Defence Minister John McCallum vowed to stop drinking after he was prevented from travelling on an Air Canada flight from Toronto to Ottawa.
Alberta Premier Ralph Klein said he would attempt to beat his 30-year drinking problem after an alcohol-fuelled tussle at an Edmonton shelter for homeless men.
I got a DUI 22 years ago and they won't allow me to visit.
"Canadian Club," if you will.
But when they go to sunny, mild Maui, they ought to stick to fruit drinks based on pineapple and orange juices and the like.
The Canadians are such drinkers, it does make it absurd that as poster above says, they won't even let Americans who ever brushed with this charge even trivially, ever enter Canada again! Massive Overkill, ridiculous.
Honourable, except when it comes to negotiated contracts with health care employees. Then he gets his supermajority (if HALF his party members abstain, any bill will pass) to shred a contract negotiated in good faith.
I despise unions as much as (or more than) anyone here, but a signed contract SHOULD mean something, or does that only apply to commercial interests?