Obstruction charge dropped against man in Cape Breton teenager's death


Nova Scotia prosecutors are dropping an obstruction of justice charge against a man in connection with the death of a 17-year-old boy who was struck and killed in June 2018 while walking home from a graduation party.

A spokeswoman for the public prosecution service said today it determined there was no realistic prospect of conviction and withdrew the charge.

The death of Joneil Hanna attracted provincewide attention after his parents criticized the police investigation, alleging Cape Breton Regional Police mishandled the case by failing to give the driver a breathalyzer test.

At the time of the fatal collision in Leitches Creek, N.S., police said the 21-year-old driver, Hayden Kenneth Laffin of Bras d'Or, N.S, was "proven not impaired.''

Laffin was later charged, however, with one count of attempting to obstruct justice in connection with the collision.

The case went to a preliminary inquiry last year, and Laffin was committed to stand trial.