Charges laid in Whistler cyclists' deaths 

Driver Samuel Alec faces several charges, including impaired driving causing death and criminal negligence causing death

click to enlarge FILE PHOTO - Whistler cyclists Kelly Blunden, left, and Ross Chafe, right, were killed in a highway accident near Pemberton on May 31.
  • File Photo
  • Whistler cyclists Kelly Blunden, left, and Ross Chafe, right, were killed in a highway accident near Pemberton on May 31.

Charges have officially been laid in connection to a fatal May 31 highway accident that killed three people north of Pemberton.

Lillooet's Samuel Alec was arrested Friday, Aug. 14 and has been charged with three counts each of criminal negligence causing death, impaired driving causing death, driving over the legal blood-alcohol limit. He was also charged for failing to remain at the scene of the accident.

“This was a very challenging and complex investigation that utilized numerous resources from several specialized and integrated support programs which culminated in the arrest of the accused, Mr. Samuel Alec,” stated Lower Mainland Traffic Services' Inspector Michael Labossiere in a release.

“This was a true coordinated effort and I would like to thank all those involved in the investigation as this investigation was only successful through their dedication to duty, hard work and professionalism.”

The crash claimed the lives of Whistler Cycling Club members Kelly Blunden and Ross Chafe, who were struck by a car on Highway 99 while riding their bikes about 25 kilometres north of Pemberton, as well as a passenger in the vehicle, the Lil'wat First Nation's Paul Maurice Pierre Jr.

"My hope is there will be some lasting legacy to this loss," said Whistler Cycling Club president Frank Savage.

"Hopefully we’ll start seeing some more signs (on Highway 99) and we’ll start seeing some more improvements to highway shoulders and sweeping – those are tangible things we’d like to see."

Details from the crash have remained scarce in the weeks since the triple fatality. Police noted no further information will be available at this time, as the matter is before the courts.

According to court documents obtained by the CBC, Alec's license was suspended at the time of the accident and he had been convicted on drunk driving charges three times prior.

Alec is set to appear in North Vancouver court on Monday, Aug. 17.

More to come.

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