Seven Years 3 Months….For A Life….

grant de patie.jpg

Grant De Patie

A Maple Ridge teen, convicted of manslaughter was sentenced to 8 years in prision, minus a credit for time already served. This all stemming from an incident that occured just over a year ago, in Maple Ridge, where the teen drove to a gas station, put $12.30 worth of gas into his car and drove away without paying. The gas attendant, Grant De Patie, who was working at the time, attempted to stop him from leaving and was hit by the vehicle, and then dragged underneath it for 7.5 kilometres, resulting in his death.

More recently….another gas attendant was also hit and seriously hurt, when trying to stop a driver who had put gas into their vehicle and was driving off without paying.

I do not understand why these attendants feel they need to put their life at risk for a little bit of gasoline. Don’t get me wrong…I am not condoning the theft of gasoline, or mowing down people to steal that gasoline, but I don’t understand why they would put their life on the line. It’s only gas!!!! Is it that they were worried that they would get in trouble? I am sure the company would rather have their employee’s be safe than having something like this happen, wouldn’t they? What happens when someone does steal gas while they are working? Does it come out of the employee’s paycheque?

Since Grant De Patie’s death, there has been talk of making gas stations pay-at-the-pump and pre-pay only….so you would have to pay for the gas first, then fill your tank. And while this does seem like a good idea, I can’t help but think that might raise the amount of armed robberies that already occur. If someone is out to steal gas and they are willing to do anything for it, even take a life, then I don’t think that this law will stop them. The gasoline companies obviously have to come up with some way to keep their employee’s safe, and those employee’s should not accountable for any gas thefts.


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