Article by Toronto Sun
A lawyer for a Nova Scotia motorist whose licence was suspended after her saliva tested positive for cannabis says his firm will use the case to launch a constitutional challenge of Canada’s revamped impaired driving laws.
Jack Lloyd says Michelle Gray’s case shows the law is too broad and too vague, mainly because she was penalized even though police testing later determined she was not impaired.
“The argument is that you’re going to be having people lose their liberty — Michelle was arrested and her personal liberty was taken away from her — and it turned out that she was not guilty of anything,” Lloyd said in an interview Thursday.
“The government’s concern (about cannabis) is overzealous and that’s resulting in harms and loss of liberty for people like Michelle, who are law-abiding and would never dream of driving while impaired.”
Gray uses medically approved cannabis to treat symptoms of multiple sclerosis.
“It’s alarming that these people have so much power, so much leeway to use it at their own discretion,” she said, referring to the RCMP.
Gray said she told police conducting a roadside check in January she had one alcoholic drink over a two-hour period before she got in her car to drive from downtown Halifax to her home in suburban Middle Sackville.
The officer then said he could detect the smell of cannabis coming from her car. That’s when Gray told him she used medical cannabis to treat her MS.
Though Gray passed a roadside alcohol test, a subsequent saliva test showed trace amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis.
She was arrested and taken to police headquarters, where she was subjected to a 12-step Drug Recognition Expert Evaluation, which includes balance and memory tests.