Her Majesty the Queen, et al. v. Anic St-Onge Lamoureux (October 13, 2011)
The Supreme Court of Canada is hearing arguments on the constitutionality of a Criminal Code amendment that was made in 2008 related to impaired driving. St-Onge Lamoureux was convicted of impaired driving, but she is not appealing her conviction.
The legislation eliminated the so-called “two beer” defence, or Carter defence, in which accused drunk drivers claim they did not consume enough to be drunk, despite failing a breathalyzer test.
The Carter defence, which got its name from the 1985 case of R. v. Carter, allowed defendants to raise doubt about the possible malfunction of a breathalyzer when it gave a reading of over 80. An accused drunk driver now had to prove that a breathalyzer was malfunctioning or was operated improperly.