Pregnant woman says she was forced to walk home in cold after police seized her car

A Quebec woman, who is eight months pregnant, says she was forced to walk home in freezing temperatures on Tuesday, after a provincial police officer confiscated her car for an unpaid registration bill.

See Full Article

Laura Cerminara, a Grade 10 teacher in the Montreal suburb of Saint-Lambert, said she was driving to school on Tuesday morning when she was she stopped by a Surete du Quebec officer on the Jacques Cartier Bridge.

The crossing connects the city to suburbs of Longueuil and Saint-Lambert.

"I started to panic a bit, because it's maybe the second time in my life I've been pulled over," she told CTV Montreal.

The officer told her she had an outstanding car-registration bill, and seized her car on the spot.

"I'm thinking, at this point in time: 'Did we never pay for this? Like I don't understand what's going on,'" she said.

"And I'm really upset. I was crying. I couldn't believe this was happening."

Cerminara said the officer then dropped her off at the entrance to the bridge, several blocks away from transit in the "freezing cold," and made no offer to bring her home.

"I just couldn't believe it," she said.

"That anyone -- it doesn't matter that I'm pregnant -- but that anyone would just be dropped off like that."

Corinne Laydu-Durnin, the secretary at Cerminara's school, said she spoke to her following the incident, and she was "shocked" by the officer's conduct.

"She was crying. She was very upset, and she's 35 weeks pregnant, so I was worried about her," she said.

"I never thought an officer could do something like this to a person."

The Surete du Quebec is looking into the incident to determine if the officer acted inappropriately. If he did, he could face disciplinary action.

The police spoke to Cerminara this morning, but she said no apology was given.

Cerminara is considering filing an official complaint.

"I just felt really shocked and hurt that I live in place where this is how someone can be treated," she said.

But it is clear to her father, Peter Cerminara, that the officer's actions were unacceptable.

"It sounded like my daughter was pleading with him to do a couple of different things to help out, (and he) was like 'No. That's the end of that,'" he said.

"I mean, they've lost themselves. They've lost the role they're supposed to be playing: (Being) a service to the community."

With a report from CTV Montreal's Tarah Schwartz



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Lost children rescued after getting trapped overnight on B.C. mountain

    Canada News CTV News
    Two young children who spent the night stranded on Burke Mountain in Coquitlam, B.C., were brought to safety by rescue crews on Monday. Their injured father had been forced to leave them to find help. Source
  • 3 handwritten wills found in Aretha Franklin's home

    World News CBC News
    A lawyer says three handwritten wills have been found in the Detroit-area home of Aretha Franklin, months after her death — including one that was discovered under cushions in the living room. The latest one is dated March 2014 and appears to give the famous singer's assets to family members. Source
  • Architects of post-9-11 CIA interrogation program to testify

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- Two former CIA contractors who designed the harsh interrogation program used after the Sept. 11 attacks are being summoned to testify before the military tribunal at the U.S. base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Source
  • Ex-White House lawyer won't testify after Trump direction

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- U.S. President Donald Trump directed his former White House Counsel Donald McGahn to defy a congressional subpoena Monday, citing a Justice Department legal opinion that maintains McGahn would have immunity from testifying about his work as a close Trump adviser. Source
  • Trump tells ex-counsel McGahn: Defy subpoena, don't testify

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- U.S. President Donald Trump directed his former White House Counsel Don McGahn to defy a congressional subpoena Monday, citing a Justice Department legal opinion that maintains McGahn would have immunity from testifying about his work as a close Trump adviser. Source
  • U.S. warns companies of data threat from Chinese-made drones

    World News CBC News
    The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has warned U.S. firms of the risks to company data from Chinese-made drones, according to a notice reviewed by Reuters on Monday. The notice, titled Chinese Manufactured Unmanned Aircraft Systems, warned that U.S. Source
  • Pediatrician indicted on 65 charges after rape accusation

    World News CTV News
    BALTIMORE -- A Maryland pediatrician accused recently of raping a patient has since been indicted on 65 additional charges, including nine counts of child sex abuse. Frederick County police and prosecutors say a grand jury has indicted Dr. Source
  • Judge rules Trump can't block subpoena of his financial records by Congress

    World News CBC News
    A federal judge in Washington has ruled against U.S. President Donald Trump in a financial records dispute with Congress. Judge Amit Mehta's ruling says Trump cannot block the House subpoena of his financial records. The decision is a setback for the Trump administration amid a widespread effort by the White House and the president's lawyers to refuse to co-operate with congressional requests for information and records. Source
  • Parents can use dead son's frozen sperm to attempt conception, judge rules

    World News CTV News
    WEST POINT, N.Y. -- The parents of a 21-year-old West Point cadet fatally injured in a skiing accident can use his frozen sperm to produce a child, a judge ruled while noting potential ethical considerations. Source
  • Venezuela's Maduro touts re-election anniversary amid political standoff

    World News CBC News
    Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro on Monday celebrated the anniversary of his disputed re-election amid a growing humanitarian crisis and political upheaval. Maduro tweeted that the May 20, 2018, election, was a "victory" for Venezuelans, though the opposition and many countries have derided it as unfair. Source