Trucker guilty of causing death of Hamilton protester at Burlington slaughterhouse

Published March 27, 2023 at 11:47 am

Regan Russell truck Hamilton Burlington Fearmans Pork slaughterhouse andre blake toronto pig save
A truck driver pleaded guilty on Monday to causing the death of Hamilton animal rights activist Regan Russell in 2020.

A truck driver pleaded guilty on Monday to causing the death of a Hamilton woman during a protest in Burlington.

Andrew Blake appeared by video today before an Ontario court and pleaded guilty to the provincial offence.

In June of 2020, animal rights activist Regan Russell was protesting in front of the Fearmans Pork food processing plant on Appleby Line and Harvester Rd. when she was struck by a semi-trailer that was delivering pigs to the plant.

The 65-year-old Russell was with the group Toronto Pig Save to give water to the pigs as well as to protest new rules that made it illegal to obstruct trucks from carrying animals. The group was also against increased fines that had just been announced for trespassing on food-processing plants.

Regan Russell truck Hamilton Burlington Fearmans Pork slaughterhouse andre blake toronto pig save

An agreed statement of facts, read by the Crown prosecutor at the proceedings, said Blake should have been aware Russell was standing near the driveway and eventual path of his truck when he turned into the plant.

Russell’s parents delivered victim impact statements, their voices breaking as they told the court about the devastating loss of a beloved daughter and caregiver.

Fellow animal rights activists with Toronto Pig Save stood outside the courthouse this morning, holding banners and posters with Russell’s face and name.

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