Donald Brodie. (Image credit: Facebook )

UPDATE: Man who struck newspaper carrier addresses court

Donald Brodie is scheduled to be sentenced Wednesday morning at 10 a.m.

The Kelowna man who was struck down four years ago while on his paper route will never recover from the violent encounter, the court heard Tuesday.

Crown counsel Dave Grabavac said that Steve Kania’s life was ruined Dec. 6, 2013 when Donald Brodie smashed a car into him at top speed while trying to evade police.

Kania sustained brain and orthopaedic injuries in the impact and they’ve forever changed him.

“(Kania) currently lives in an old age home,” said Grabavac, highlighting that it’s an unfortunate state for someone who is only 45, but necessary given the lack of functionality that Kania experiences.

“(Donald Brodie) destroyed Steve Kania’s life …for the rest of his life he’ll suffer.”

He’s worse off now, Grabavac suggested, than he might have been had he been killed.

Brodie was convicted of two counts at trial including criminal negligence causing bodily hard. Grabavac made the comments during submissions for sentencing.

Kania’s brother Richard provided a victim impact statement to the court, and in it said before the incident his brother “enjoyed a broader dose of freedom” that allowed him to spend time with friends and family.

The facility he is now in doesn’t allow for as much connectedness to loved ones and he’s gained an unhealthy amount of weight—he even needs daily reminders about how to conduct himself and oftentimes forgets about his personal hygiene.

While Grabavac homed in on Kania’s suffering during Brodie’s sentencing hearing, he said he was recommending a“very high sentence” of 10 years imprisonment, due also to Brodie’s criminal record and lack of demonstrable behavioural changes.

As the sentencing hearing continued, defense counsel suggested a three to four year prison term due to several mitigating factors. Those included Brodie’s difficult childhood, his spur of the moment decision to flee from police, his remorse for what happened as well as rehab courses he was taking in jail, said defense counsel John Gustafson, who also noted he is trying to extricate himself from the criminal lifestyle.

After both defense and crown counsels made their submissions in the hearing, Brodie was given the chance to speak.

He told the court others have spoken on his behalf during the trial and there wasn’t much more that he could say.

“I have to let my actions speak louder than my words,” he said.

Brodie has been linked to both the UN and the Lords of Chaos gangs and has a committed 43 criminal offences in the last 18 years. Those offences include assault, robbery, weapons infractions and a variety of non compliance issues. He has not shown himself to be either contrite or changed by his dealings with the court for these matters and has recently been convicted of a jailhouse assault.

Brodie has also shown himself to be less than ideal, over the course of this trial.

Originally Mounties charged Nathan Fahl for crimes attached to the incident, but Brodie told almost anyone who would listen that he was the driver.

One confession he made was to Sgt. Michael Cooke on Monday, 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.

During his trial Brodie recanted that confession and told the courts he only said he was the driver to help out his friend, Fahl.

B.C. Supreme Court Justice Martha Devlin found that argument to be lacking merit and Brodie was convicted of the two charges.

Devlin is scheduled to hand down her sentence at 10 a.m. Wednesday. Check for an update to this story.

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