Myla Bui snuggles with her sister Leila. (GoFundMe)

Velocity expert testifies SUV sped up to 90 km/h ahead of crash that left Saanich girl unresponsive

Tenessa Nikirk is charged with dangerous operation of a motor vehicle causing bodily harm

Gasps echoed in court Wednesday as an expert in calculating the velocity of vehicles from video, described how a dark coloured SUV accelerated to more than 90 km/h as it passed another vehicle, approaching the crosswalk where Leila Bui was hit on Dec. 20, 2017.

Tenessa Nikirk of North Saanich is charged with one count of dangerous operation of a motor vehicle causing bodily harm in relation to the Saanich crash that left Bui severely debilitated, with severe brain injuries and multiple internal injuries.

Adam Cybanski told the courts that he calculated the speed of Nikirk’s vehicle by using four dash cam videos provided to him by Saanich police; two from one car that were pointed out the front and the back windows, along with two videos taken from cameras on a bus, which faced out the front and left side.

RELATED: Court hears of motorist’s erratic driving before 11-year-old girl struck in Saanich crosswalk

Cybanski spent 28 years in the Canadian Armed Forces and was put in charge of aircraft accident investigations. From there he developed expertise in analyzing video and determining velocity of air crafts from videos. He has been called to testify in a number of court cases across Canada and in the United States.

A large portion of the morning was spent detailing the method Cybanski uses to calculate the speed of vehicles based on frames taken from a video. Usually videos take 30 frames per second, which was true in the case of the dash-cam video from the car, but not in the case of the footage from the bus’s video which had 30 frames per second but most were duplicates.

He runs a small business focusing on velocity analysis from video and estimates he’s been involved with 50 to 60 investigations. In a previous ruling, a judge noted Cybanski’s methods are not an exact science to which he stated his methods are based on exact science, but could not answer whether they were or were not exact.

Using two software programs to track stationary objects such as telephone poles or yellow centre lines in the video, Cybanski is able to create a model match of the scene. A video shown in court Wednesday, created by Cybanski, showed yellow and green models superimposed that matched the cars and points of reference in the original footage.

According to Cybanski’s findings, the rear facing camera in the vehicle showed the SUV accelerating from 50 km/h to 90 km/h and the forward facing camera showed the SUV accelerating from 95 km/h to 100 km/h. He testified his calculations were accurate within two km/h.

RELATED: Driver charged in Saanich crash that left Lelia Bui in unresponsive state to appear in court

The bus’s dash-cam footage showed the SUV passed the bus at about 80 km/h, which Cybanski testified there was a greater margin of error, closer to 5 km/h, because of the lack of frames per second.

Cybanski was also asked to determine the distance of the SUV when it came to a stop at the far end of the crosswalk on Ash Road. Using the same method he testified he calculated the rear bumper of the SUV was 18 to 20 meters beyond the edge of the crosswalk.

On Monday court heard from a number of witnesses who recounted Nikirk’s erratic driving just before the crash. Leila Bui has been in a non-responsive state since the morning she was struck on her way to school.

Bui’s father Tuan says the family relies on faith and hope, and the belief that their daughter will come back.

“It’s hard to know what’s happening inside her,” he says. “So we just continue to take good care of her, give her love and support and positive energy and whatever it takes to get one step closer.”

With files from Nina Grossman



kendra.crighton@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Central Saanich needs at least more than 500 additional daycare spaces

Report before Central Saanich says region faces a ‘chronic shortage’ of daycare spaces

Saanich offers free saplings to encourage residents to spruce up for National Tree Day

Giveaway to take place Sept. 21 in Glanford Park from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Sooke RCMP searching for two people, reported missing on Sept. 10

Alannah Brooke Logan, 20, and Beau Richard Santuccione, 32, last seen on Otter Point Road

Victoria man plans 30-hour walk to raise funds for vulnerable youth

Take a Hike engages youth in intensive, clinical counselling and outdoor experiential learning

Opponent of proposed Sidney cannabis store calls on councillors to heed health authority advice

Council to consider revised application from Happy Buddha Cannabis on Sept. 28

3 new deaths due to COVID-19 in B.C., 139 new cases

B.C. confirms 40 ‘historic cases,’ as well

POLL: Do you plan on allowing your children to go trick or treating this year?

This popular annual social time will look quite different this year due to COVID-19

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies at 87

The court’s second female justice, died Friday at her home in Washington

Comox Valley protesters send message over old-growth logging

Event in downtown Courtenay was part of wider event on Friday

Application deadline for fish harvester benefits program extended

Those financially impacted by the pandemic have until Oct. 5 to apply

VIDEO: B.C. to launch mouth-rinse COVID-19 test for kids

Test involves swishing and gargling saline in mouth and no deep-nasal swab

Young Canadians have curtailed vaping during pandemic, survey finds

The survey funded by Heart & Stroke also found the decrease in vaping frequency is most notable in British Columbia and Ontario

B.C. teachers file Labour Relations Board application over COVID-19 classroom concerns

The application comes as B.C.’s second week of the new school year comes to a close

Man sentenced to 7 years for gas-and-dash death of Alberta gas station owner

Ki Yun Jo was killed after Mitchell Sydlowski sped off in a stolen cube van without paying for $198 of fuel

Most Read