Kelowna man washes hands of confession to police

Donald Brodie testified Monday that his previous public confession was untrue.

A Kelowna man who once confessed to speeding through a police check stop in Rutland and running down a newspaper carrier has changed his tune.

Donald Brodie testified under oath in B.C. Supreme Court Monday that he was simply trying to help out a friend, “who spent his whole life” in prison when he made that confession, saying he was not the driver.

The friend he claims he was trying to help was Nathan Fahl, a local prolific offender. In December 2013 Fahl was charged with criminal negligence causing bodily harm and flight causing bodily harm for running through a check stop and plowing into a pedestrian. That pedestrian was Capital News paper carrier Steve Kania, who suffered a serious brain injury as well as broken bones from the impact.

The court proceedings were moving along as expected until Brodie said they had the wrong guy, and he was in fact the driver who nearly killed Kania. He made this confession to multiple media outlets in June 2014 as well as the police.

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In short order, the charges against Fahl were dropped and they were applied to Brodie.

Crown counsel David Grabavac read one of the confessions Brodie made to a Sgt. Michael Cooke on Monday. It was dated March 8. 2014.

“I already told you I was the driver. Nate was probably trying to tell a joke, talking on the phone and trying to protect me because he knows I’ll get lots of federal time, so he’s covering for me,” Grabavac read from a letter Brodie had written.

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“He’s done almost all his own life in jail, he knows the phones are recorded. So whatever he’s thinking to do is not going to change the fact that I was the driver.”

Brodie said that he made this confession after being charged and having been given the files related to the case, though Crown pointed out the date he wrote, the police record and Canada Post stamp was from months before he was charged.

Closing arguments in the lengthy case are scheduled for Wednesday and a judge is expected to render a decision by week’s end.