Gurjit Dhillon (shown at the Surrey courthouse in 2012 with his wife) was found guilty of dangerous driving causing death for killing Pritam Benning (below). Dhillon has now been granted full parole after serving four months of his one-year jail sentence.

Driver who killed Surrey grandfather granted parole after serving one-third of sentence

Gurjit Dhillon has served four months of a one-year jail term in the death of 83-year-old Pritam Benning.

A Surrey man who struck and killed an 83-year-old at a Surrey bus stop has been granted full parole after serving just one-third of his sentence.

Gurjit Singh Dhillon was sentenced to a year in jail in 2013 after being found guilty of dangerous driving causing the death of grandfather Pritam Benning in 2009.

Dhillon appealed his conviction but lost at the end of June this year and began his prison term.

Now, four months later, he has been granted full parole by the Parole Board of Canada following a hearing on Tuesday (Nov. 25).

Benning was sitting at a bus stop near 128 Street and 72 Avenue when Dhillon, driving a Corvette, suddenly accelerated at the intersection, jumping a curb and striking Benning. The senior’s legs were amputated and he passed away in hospital five days later.

The parole board’s decision says Dhillon’s behaviour while in prison has been “appropriate” and he has completed violence prevention and substance abuse programs.

It also notes that he was on bail for four-and-a-half years prior to sentencing and did not breach his conditions.

During the hearing, Dhillon said while he could understand why witnesses thought he was street racing in 2009, he wasn’t, but he acknowledged that he was showing off.

He also described the remorse and shame he went through after Benning’s death, and said he used alcohol to cope. Dhillon added he wants to continue to work with a psychologist to address ongoing emotional programs and issues with decision making.

“On balance, the Board finds that your risk to re-offend can be managed on the plan presented and as such your risk is not undue,” the parole decision reads.

Dhillon is subject to a five-year driving ban – part of his original sentence – and will also be on probation for two years once his sentence expires next year.

His parole conditions also include abstaining from alcohol, having no contact with the victim’s family and following a treatment plan to address decision making and impulsivity.

 

Surrey North Delta Leader

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