Woman who struck 11-year-old Saanich girl in crosswalk found guilty

Tenessa Nikirk shielding her face near the Victoria courthouse Monday

Tenessa Nikirk, who was behind the wheel of a black Mercedes SUV that struck 11-year-old Leila Bui in Saanich, has been found guilty of dangerous driving causing bodily harm.

The decision was reached by the judge Monday morning.

Nikirk, who is in her early 20s, struck then 11-year-old Leila Bui in the crosswalk on Ash Road at the intersection of Torquay Drive on the morning of Dec. 20, 2017.

The crash left Bui with severe brain damage. The family has brought Leila Bui to the courtroom Monday.

The sentencing date has been scheduled for Feb. 4.

The Crown alleged Nikirk showed a pattern of troubling driving behaviour that morning including tailgating, excessive speeding, and texting behind the wheel.

READ MORE: Dashcam video captures moments before SUV hits Leila Bui

Defence lawyer Tom Morino called the crash an “inevitable accident.” He told the courts that Nikirk’s reaction time was hindered because, as one witness recounted, Bui ran into the crosswalk and that Nikirk’s view of the child was obscured because a vehicle was stopped on Torquay.

READ MORE: ‘An inevitable accident’: Lawyer argues woman who struck Saanich girl in crosswalk couldn’t see her

The sentencing date will be scheduled next week on Feb. 4.

Julian KolsutJulian Kolsut

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