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Moose Jaw Judge: Looking At Cellphone While Driving Isn’t The Same As Using It

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A Moose Jaw judge ruled that Saskatchewan man Cory Haliwyz is not guilty after receiving a cellphone ticket last year. Haliwyz was driving on Moose Jaw’s Main Street in May 2014 when he got the ticket for distracted driving.

A police officer saw Haliwyz holding his cellphone while driving. The officer stopped Haliwyz and saw an incoming text message on the phone.

“The man told a provincial court judge he didn’t push any buttons or manipulate the iPhone. He said when he heard it buzz, he picked it up and briefly looked at the locked screen to see if it was his daughter.”

The Crown argued against the judge, saying that the province’s cellphone law is intended to stop distracted drivers. They said that Haliwyz should have been found guilty, however, Judge Margaret Gordon disagreed. In a written statement, Gordon said:

“Mr. Haliwyz looked at the screen, saw who it was and nothing more. He did not touch any of the controls, press any of the buttons or do anything active.”

The judge says that Haliwyz was found not guilty because he was only looking at his cellphone, and that’s not the same as using it. Gordon said the law doesn’t prohibit drivers from looking at their electronic devices.

What do you think of the judge’s decision in this distracted driving case? Let us know in the comments below.

[via CBC News]

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