Woman Stopped For Ducks: Life In Prison Not Likely Despite Jury's Conviction

Effie Orfanides

A woman who stopped for ducks faces life in prison after her action was blamed in a fatal crash back in 2010. According to USA Today, Emma Czornobaj parked her car on a Montreal-area highway in order to help a family of ducks cross the busy road, causing a motorcyclist and his daughter (who was riding with him) to be killed when they crashed into Czornobaj's parked car.

The 25-year-old was found guilty of two counts of criminal negligence causing death and two counts of dangerous driving causing death. A jury voted unanimously to convict Czornobaj, and now she faces life in prison. Interestingly enough, the motorcyclist (identified as 50-year-old Andre Roy) was speeding at the time of the crash -- and the accident was still blamed on Czornobaj.

The woman who stopped for the sake of the ducks' lives thought that she was doing a good deed. A self-proclaimed animal lover, Czornobaj said that she didn't see a mother duck when she spotted the seven ducklings in the median. She stopped her car in the left lane and got out, trying to herd the baby ducks so that they wouldn't get run over. Apparently, Czornobaj had plans to take the ducks home. However, while she was trying to save them, Roy came speeding along the highway and slammed into the parked car -- which he obviously didn't expect to encounter.

As you can imagine, there is a lot of debate surrounding this case. While it is not legal to "park" your car in the left lane of a highway, Roy was speeding and should have been more cautious of his surroundings. Czornobaj did not intend to hurt anyone -- in fact, it sounds like she was trying to do just the opposite.

Although the woman who stopped for the ducks faces life in prison, Nola reports that it is unlikely that Czornobaj will be sentenced to life behind bars.

The woman who stopped to save the ducks might not have a life sentence punishment as her attorney might appeal the verdict. As previously reported by The Inquisitr, Czornobaj's duck rescue didn't involve criminal intent, and that would be the basis for an appeal. However, the jury seemed hard pressed, and the prosecutor felt as though this was a great opportunity to set an example for others.

The prosecutor explained:

"What we hope is that a clear message is sent to society that we do not stop on the highway for animals. It's not worth it."