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Barrie woman accused in pedestrian crash released on bail

Cassie Korzenko, who is charged with three counts of impaired driving causing bodily harm, had been in custody since Dec. 1 crash
Cassie Korzenko, 32, has been charged with three counts of impaired driving causing bodily harm following a crash in south-end Barrie on Dec. 1, 2022.

Cassie Korzenko, who has been accused of driving while impaired and running into a group of pedestrians in Barrie's south end last month, has been released from jail following almost two months in custody.

Courthouse officials confirmed to BarrieToday that Korzenko was bailed out by a surety on Wednesday, Jan. 25. She is scheduled to appear in Barrie case management court on Wednesday, Feb. 8.

Korzenko had been in custody since the Dec. 1 crash when three people suffered serious injuries after being struck by a vehicle near Mapleview Drive and Bayview Drive before a Barrie Colts game.

She has been charged with three counts of impaired driving causing bodily harm. None of the allegations have been tested in court. 

Barrie police say the vehicle involved in the crash was travelling south on Bayview Drive, struck the pedestrians and then collided with two other vehicles, whose occupants were uninjured. 

Korzenko was arrested at the scene and taken to hospital.

In her Jan. 23 court appearance, where she appeared via video remand court again from Central North Correctional Centre (CNCC) in Penetanguishene, court officials learned she remained fourth in line on the bail beds program’s wait-list.

The Bail Verification and Supervision Programs (BVSP) and Indigenous Bail Verification and Supervision Programs enable  accused individuals to be released from incarceration with supervision while they are in the community awaiting trial, explained Elizabeth Fry Society of Simcoe Muskoka executive director Meaghan Chambers in an email to BarrieToday.

“This makes it possible for people who are facing systemic barriers — such as poverty, homelessness, mental illness, substance use and other barriers caused by systemic discrimination — to be released into the community on bail," Chambers said. 

The Barrie-based not-for-profit social service agency, which provides support for women and girls involved in the Canadian justice system, currently operates four bail beds for women and gender-diverse people, she noted, adding staff works in conjunction with the local BVSP and Indigenous Bail Verification and Supervision Program to provide 24-hour community accommodations and support to individuals, pending resolution of applied charges.

The bail beds program, Chambers explained, is designed for accused individuals who otherwise would not be released on bail due to socioeconomic factors including the intersectionality of criminalization as it relates to poverty, homelessness, housing security, race, income, sexuality, gender, family status, mental health, substance use, etc. A release order to the bail bed program is determined by a justice, she added.

“Individuals in the bail bed program at Elizabeth Fry Society Simcoe Muskoka have access to 24/7, on-site support staff, trauma-informed and housing-focused case management, psycho-educational workshops and referrals to other community organizations, culturally relevant services and supports,” she said.

Wait-lists for the bail bed program are applied when available beds are at capacity, Chambers added. 

“Remand rates in Ontario remain extremely high, with over 70 per cent of those in Ontario’s correctional facilities awaiting bail, trial or sentencing. In Canada, under the law, a person accused of a crime is presumed innocent until they are proven guilty," she said. 

Locally, the Salvation Army Simcoe County and District of Muskoka Bail Verification and Supervision Program provides the same type of service to males.