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Dead man's family speaks at Newmarket woman's sentencing hearing

Midhurst resident Dominik Adamek struck by vehicle and killed in 2018; 'Part of my heart was ripped away on May 5 by Maimuna Baldeh,' says his mother

The fate of the Newmarket woman convicted in a fatal hit-and-run that claimed the life of Midhurst resident Dominik Adamek in 2018 is now in the judge’s hands.

Maimuna Baldeh, who was 30 at the time of the crash, was arrested and charged on Jan. 30, 2019, several months after the incident. 

Following a two-week jury trial, Baldeh was found guilty on Nov. 3, 2023, of failing to stop at the scene of a collision causing death.

A sentencing hearing was held today, May 16, at the Barrie courthouse, where the Crown said it was seeking a five-year sentence to be accompanied by a driving prohibition, as well as a DNA order.

Adamek, 27, was killed in the early-morning hours of May 5, 2018, after he was struck by a vehicle near the intersection of Wilson Drive and Carson Road in Springwater Township, just north of Barrie. He had been walking along the side of the road.

Maimuna Baldeh leaves the Barrie courthouse with her defence lawyer, Stephen Di Clemente, on Thursday following her sentencing hearing. | Nikki Cole/BarrieToday

On Thursday, more than six years after his death, and six months after Baldeh had been convicted, court heard from Adamek’s family and the despair they’ve felt since his death.

The victim impact statement was read into the court record by the Crown attorney, who noted it was important to the Adamek’s family that people knew who he was and the life he had led before the deadly collision.

Accompanied by several photos showing Adamek with his dog and hiking, the family wanted the court to know he was a handsome, happy and adventurous young man.

“Our joy was cut short too soon … The absence of his presence is felt profoundly,” the family said in their victim impact statement. “On May 5, 2018, our lives were forever changed. On Mother’s Day … we buried our 27-year-old son and brother.”

In the statement, Adamek’s mother spoke about how Dominik would always surprise her with flowers on Mother’s Day.

“That year, he didn’t bring any. Now I buy flowers for his grave,” read the Crown attorney from the statement, while Adamek’s family could be heard crying in the gallery of the courtroom.

“Part of my heart was ripped away on May 5 by Maimuna Baldeh.”

Wearing black leggings, a cream sweater with gold flecks and a black headscarf with burgundy flowers, Baldeh addressed the courtroom at the end of the sentencing hearing, which lasted nearly four hours.

“I truly regret what has happened,” she said. “I wish it just never happened like that. If I had just known that I had hit a person, I would’ve stayed there because I’m a nurse and … it looks like I haven’t done what I was supposed to do. I wasn’t sure of what had happened.”

Baldeh had been working as a personal support worker and attending nursing school at the time of her arrest.

“I truly feel what the family is going through because I can’t imagine losing a loved one. I know how I would feel if it was my son who had died. I truly feel their pain, and I just wish that it never happened like this,” she added, as members of Adamek’s family briskly left the courtroom in tears. “No amount of words that I am going to say might … express how regretful I am.”

The defence is seeking a conditional sentence of 18 to 20 months, including house arrest.

The judge is scheduled to hand down Baldeh’s sentence on Friday, June 7 at 9:30 a.m. at the Barrie courthouse.