A B.C. Court of Appeal case was held Friday for a Chilliwack man who repeatedly fled police with children on board his vehicle.
Ryan Alfred Winczura – a prohibited driver – was sentenced to 8.5 months in jail for hitting high speeds trying to escape Mounties not once or twice but four times in 2016.
The 35-year-old with an extensive history of bad driving pleaded guilty on April 7, 2017 to five counts related to four separate incidents.
After the sentence came was handed down, Winczura informed the court in October he planned to appeal.
Three times in November and December in 2016, Winczura took off in his SUV when officers tried to pull him over.
In one instance in June 2017 his vehicle reached 135 kilometres an hour (km/h) on Prest Road while fleeing Const. Michael Sabulsky who later found Winczura’s vehicle parked on an incline in his backyard. A witness on the adjacent golf course told police they saw a man exit the vehicle “with a screaming child in hand.”
Then on Nov. 4, the prohibited driver was spotted by police who ordered him to pull over. Winczura refused, responding that he needed to drop his young son off at school. He fled in a 2010 Land rover hitting 102 km/h near Little Mountain elementary before being arrested at his home, after dropping his child off at a different school.
Then on Nov. 29 in a GMC Yukon, he again took police on a chase ending with his arrest. Two young children were in the vehicle and Winczura resisted arrest.
Finally on Dec. 27 he did it again, spotted on Highway 1 clocked at 155 km/h. A chase was called off following RCMP policy, but an officer simply went to his house and waited for him. When Winczura arrived, he slunk out of the vehicle with a young girl, ran inside, and then slammed the door on an officer’s foot multiple times. He was arrested after a stand-off.
His lawyer asked for a 30-to-60-day intermittent sentence, while Crown asked for 10 months in jail and a three-year driving prohibition.
On April 27, 2017, Judge Richard Browning issued various consecutive sentences for the four separate incidents adding up to seven-and-a-half months more jail time on top of one month time served.
Winczura was ordered to attend counselling, and prohibited from driving for thee years, along with 12 months probation. He was ordered not only not to be allowed in the driver’s seat of a vehicle he was not to be present in a motor vehicle other than public transport without permission from the court.
In BC Supreme Court in Chilliwack on Oct. 10, 2017, Winczura’s new lawyer David Ferguson asked for an adjournment for what was supposed to be his appeal.
“Crown is ready to proceed,” Crown counsel Anna Tosso told the court.
Ferguson said in taking over the case from a retiring lawyer he took over this file and he was not ready to go ahead with the appeal.
The appeal was held in New Westminster Supreme Court for two hours on Jan. 19. The judge held over his decision to March 9.