Drug use briefly costs teen licence

A newly licenced 16-year-old most likely regrets smoking a joint while driving, after police caught him on Nov. 14.

A newly licenced 16-year-old most likely regrets smoking a joint while driving, after police caught him on Nov. 14.

Police responded to a call about a suspicious vehicle around 8 p.m. north on Tower Road in the County of Stettler, and found the 16-year-old smoking in the vehicle. As a result, his licence was suspended for 24 hours and the vehicle impounded for the same length of time. The teen is responsible for the cost of the impound and towing.

Stettler RCMP Cpl. Ryan Koehli said that the drug use penalty for graduated driver licence (GDL) holders should not be confused with the alcohol penalty. GDL holders are not allowed to drive with any impairment, and being caught driving with any blood alcohol reading while being a GDL holder will result in a 30-day suspension and vehicle impound.

Earlier that day, around 1 a.m., police pulled over a 19-year-old man they recognized as being on a curfew order as part of a youth sentence. The young man was brought home and charged with failure to comply with youth sentence.

The next day, police did a residence check after curfew and the man was not home, and was thus charged a second time and will appear in court in January.

On Nov. 17, a Stettler man earned a three-day suspension after being pulled over shortly after midnight. While his driving hadn’t appeared questionable enough to pull him over, an equipment failure — most likely a light, Koehli said — prompted the stop. The RCMP member behind the stop noticed the smell of alcohol and did a roadside sobriety test, which placed the driver right in the three-day suspension range.

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