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Woman charged over fatal crash

Jan 07 2012

A Victoria woman has been charged with dangerous driving causing death over a crash on Saltspring Island in which her friend died.

Laura Georgina Rann, 26, was allegedly driving a late-model Dodge on Fulford-Ganges Road around 9: 30 a.m. on Nov. 14 , 2010, when she lost control on a bend, sending the car into a tree.

Reid Parent, a 25-year-old musician from Whitehorse, died. Rann was taken to hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

Parent had moved to Saltspring from Whitehorse a few years before the crash. His family described him as a talented lyricist and hip-hop/rap musician who made a living as a carpenter.

Parent's aunt, Andrea Lemphers, who lives in Whitehorse, said she does not know the circumstances of the accident. Saltspring RCMP have not said whether speed or alcohol were factors.

Lemphers does not know how long Parent and Ranns were friends, but said they were at a party the night before and decided to sleep at a friend's place to avoid drinking and driving.

"He had to get to work in the morning so he accepted a ride with her," Lemphers said.

Lemphers said she is glad someone is going to be held accountable for Parent's death.

She said Parent's mother, Daisy Lemphers, who lives in Ontario, still finds her son's death too painful to talk about. "It's still very raw and very painful, especially with Christmas and the [first] anniversary passing," Lemphers said.

Crown spokesman Neil MacKenzie said motor vehicle deaths are often complex and it is not uncommon for a year to pass before charges are laid. "Motor-vehicle fatalities are somewhat more involved than other files we deal with, so it takes us a little longer to proceed with charge approval," he said.

Crown prosecutors received the charge recommendation in August and approved the charges just before Christmas.

Rann is due to appear in Ganges provincial court on Wednesday to answer to the charges.

kderosa@timescolonist.com

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