Calgary father who killed daughter in drunk driving crash wants conviction overturned or lesser sentence

A Calgary father who killed his daughter when he rolled his Jeep while drunk wants his conviction overturned or at least a lighter sentence.

Michael Shaun Bomford was convicted of drunk driving causing death and bodily harm, as well as dangerous driving causing death and bodily harm.

In September, Bomford was handed a 5½-year sentence for his crimes.

In a notice filed with the Alberta Court of Appeal this week, Bomford asked the province’s top court to overturn his conviction and either substitute an acquittal or order a new trial. 

If he is turned down, he wants a lesser sentence because he says the one imposed “was excessive and unreasonable in the circumstances.”

The Jeep Liberty crashed on McKnight Boulevard N.E. on Oct. 18, 2016. (CBC)

On Oct. 18, 2016, Bomford’s Jeep Liberty was travelling west on McKnight Boulevard between 68th Street and 52nd Street N.E. when it went out of control, fishtailing in the far right lane.

Meghan Bomford, 17, died after she was thrown from her father’s Jeep.

Meghan’s best friend, Kelsey Nelson, was also thrown from the vehicle. She survived but suffered a serious brain injury.

A number of Good Samaritans stopped to help, including an off-duty firefighter, a paramedic and an ER nurse. Family members credit them with saving Nelson’s life. 

At the time of the crash, Bomford’s blood-alcohol level was three times the legal limit. Accident reconstructionists were able to show the Jeep was travelling more than 30 km/h above the speed limit when the father lost control.

Bomford had picked up his daughter and her friend so the girls could go to the police station to get criminal background checks done that would allow them to become junior ringette coaches. 

Kelsey Nelson suffered a severe brain injury when her best friend’s father drove drunk, causing a rollover. Meghan Bomford, 17, was killed in the crash and Nelson says she still talks to her. (Meghan Grant/CBC)

While they were en route to the police station, Meghan was texting with her mother.

The text messages were important evidence for the prosecution because they showed Bomford was behind the wheel, not Meghan, as defence suggested. 

But in his notice of appeal, Bomford indicated he will argue the text messages should not have been admitted as evidence. 

After Bomford was convicted and sentenced, Meghan’s family said that with the court process over, they’d finally be able to properly grieve their loss.

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