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Bus driver in deadly 2019 Ottawa crash found not guilty on all charges

OTTAWA — The lawyers for an Ottawa bus driver charged in connection with a deadly crash in 2019 say their client's acquittal has been a long time coming.
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OTTAWA — The lawyers for an Ottawa bus driver charged in connection with a deadly crash in 2019 say their client's acquittal has been a long time coming.

Aissatou Diallo was found not guilty on all charges in an Ottawa court on Wednesday — three counts of dangerous driving causing death and 35 counts of dangerous driving causing bodily harm.

The charges stemmed from a deadly crash in January 2019 when the OC Transpo double-decker bus that Diallo was driving slammed into a pedestrian platform overhang during rush hour.

Three people were killed and dozens of others were severely injured.

In a statement, Diallo's lawyers Solomon Friedman and Fady Mansour said Ontario Court Justice Matthew Webber's verdict confirmed Diallo is "an innocent woman … put in an awful position by circumstances far beyond her control."

The lawyers added that while they and their client acknowledge the tragedy continues to reverberate, the verdict confirms the crash was "an accident, not a criminal act."

Ottawa city solicitor David White said in a statement that 29 lawsuits have been brought against the municipality since the crash, and that more than $5 million in settlements have been paid.

"Two of the three fatality-related claims have been settled and the city and its insurers continue to actively work on resolving the remaining claims," White said.

"The city has acknowledged its responsibility for the collision and, through its insurers, has made advance payments of partial claims for plaintiffs who have required financial assistance and are not yet recovered sufficiently to settle their full claims."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 22, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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