Teen caught stunt driving in mother’s car one of more than 300 such charges laid this month in York
TORONTO -- A teenager caught stunt driving in his mother’s car without her knowledge is one of more than 300 such charges police in York Region say they have laid since the beginning of the month,
York Regional Police said that an officer spotted a vehicle travelling at a high rate of speed on Highway 7, near Keele Street, around 10 p.m. on May 4. The vehicle was travelling about 120 kilometres an hour in a 60-kilometre-per-hour zone.
The 16-year-old driver with a G1 licence was driving unaccompanied when stopped by police.
The police cruiser’s dashboard camera captured the exchange between the officer and the driver, in which the teenager explained he was driving his parent’s vehicle. In the video, the teen is heard saying that he took the car without permission.
The officer is then heard giving the teen an opportunity to call his mother and give her a heads up about the situation.
As the officer speaks to the mother, she can be heard in the video saying “wow” in response to the stunt driving charge.
The young driver had his licence suspended and the vehicle was impounded for seven days.
In a similar incident on May 11, police said that officers stopped a vehicle travelling 160 kilometres on Highway 50, north of Major Mackenzie Drive West, around 11 p.m.
The speed limit on that stretch of roadway is 70 kilometres an hour.
A 22-year-old driver from Oakville was charged with stunt driving and speeding. Their licence was suspended and their vehicle was impounded for seven days.
Police have said that stunt driving continues to be a problem amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
York Regional Police Staff Sgt. Andy Graham, the Unit Commander with the Road Safety Bureau, said it isn’t just young, inexperienced drivers getting caught.
“We have gone from a 16-year-old driver up to an 80-year-old driver," Graham said. "I've seen men, women of varying ages and the vehicles are very diverse as well, we’ve gone from a Lamborghini down to your average Honda. There doesn’t seem to be one set vehicle or one set of age group involved in this."
Between May 1 and May 11, officers said they laid 306 charges for stunt driving, defined as going more than 50 kilometeres per hour over the speed limit. There were 146 similar charges laid in the same time period last year.
Overnight, nine drivers had their vehicles impounded.
“Speed kills,” police said in a news release issued Tuesday. “Police are urging drivers to slow down and obey posted speed limits.”