Grim prognosis for race victim -June 14,2006 By MAX MAUDIE, EDMONTON SUN
The passenger in the Mustang that flipped and rolled during a high-speed race Monday night is clinging to life in hospital, but police say he'll likely never fully recover.
"He's going to be paralyzed, if he does make it," said Const. Mike Wynnyk.
Yesterday, the 36-year-old man - who suffered severe leg, spinal, and head injuries - was still alive, said police.
The 2006 Ford Mustang the man was in - driven by a 44-year-old man who would suffer a broken arm in the crash - made a move to pass the 1998 Mustang he was allegedly racing, driven by a 25-year-old woman. Speeds reached more than 150 kmh, according to witnesses at the scene. An official figure hasn't been released by police, who continue to investigate.
The man's car ran headlong into a median around 10 p.m. It flipped and rolled several times before coming to a rest at 149 Street, south of 137 Avenue.
Police caught up to the woman's Mustang nearby - running with a flat tire after it hit the median - about an hour later.
Wynnyk, part of the police's Street Legal team, said such races aren't uncommon on city streets.
The Street Legal team deals with organized street racing.
Maybe one driver becomes a little envious of another's pimped-out exhaust, or someone gets a little aggressive on the road, or a guy sees "some cute girl in a car and he wants to show off," said Wynnyk, speaking generally of street races.
When it comes to cars, "everything is mutated between speed and performance now," said Wynnyk's Street Legal partner, Det. Terry Innes. "And people want to use that speed and performance."
Injury prevention physician Dr. Louis Francescutti called on city police to crack down on traffic infractions, one of a package of promises Chief Mike Boyd recently made.
"The fact that people get away with (dangerous driving) just enforces the behaviour," he said.
Gerald Brisebois, 44, faces a charge of dangerous driving causing bodily harm.
Nevada Patenaude, 25, faces charges of impaired driving and dangerous driving. Prime Minister Stephen Harper recently said his government will make street racing a new criminal offence that will result in stiffer sentences for offenders
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