Man gets 27 months for threatening police with knives

Crown says it’s lucky no one was killed

Rosie Mullaley rmullaley@thetelegram.com
Published on February 3, 2011
Wayne David Hussey (a.k.a. Hennessey) was sentenced to 27 months in jail Wednesday for assault with a weapon and uttering threats after he waved knives at police officers last month. — Photo by Rosie Gillingham/The Telegram

Wayne David Hussey (a.k.a. Hennessey) made his way gingerly out of the courtroom Wednesday.

Wearing a cast and sling on his right arm, the 40-year-old had just been sentenced to 27 months in jail.

But after the fear he provoked in a normally quiet St. John’s neighbourhood last month, the Crown prosecutor said Hussey was lucky to have got away with just a broken arm.

“It was altogether a horrible night for everyone,” William Cadigan said in provincial court Wednesday.

“Luckily, this ended up in court and not at Caul’s (Funeral Home).”

The night in question was

Jan. 8.

Around 7 p.m., Hussey showed up at a woman’s house on Jordan Place in Shea Heights, drank a half a bottle of Lamb’s rum and five beers, and left.

Five hours later, he came back even more intoxicated. He was barely able to stand and had a cut above his eye.

The woman and her teenaged son tried to tend to his injuries, but Hussey became violent and pushed her and assaulted her son.

The woman called 911, but Hussey refused treatment from the paramedics.

When police showed up, Hussey went to the kitchen drawer, grabbed two knives and threatened to stab the three officers.

After demands to drop the knives were ignored, officers drew their guns on Hussey, who taunted them to shoot him.

They managed to disarm Hussey using pepper spray.

In the struggle, Hussey broke his arm. He needed surgery, during which a metal plate and pins were inserted. He still requires more surgeries.

See JUDGE, page A3

“This (incident) could have ended in one of three ways,” Cadigan said. “This way, Mr. Hussey (peacefully) giving up, or Mr. Hussey deceased.

“Thanks to good police work and luck … police didn’t actually have to shoot Mr. Hussey.”

Hussey pleaded guilty to assaulting the teen, possessing weapons dangerous to the public, uttering threats to the officers and assaulting the police officers with the knives.

While Hussey didn’t actually use the knives on the police, he did make motions towards them, which, under the Criminal Code of Canada, still constitutes charges of assault.

During the sentencing hearing, Cadigan pointed to Hussey’s lengthy criminal record and the seriousness of the most recent incident.

“This was a very, very serious matter …,” Cadigan said. “It caused great alarm in the public.”

Defence lawyer Lauryn Chafe said Hussey has a long-standing problem with drugs, which has contributed to his criminal behaviour.

She said he was in the methadone program for seven years before getting kicked out a year ago.

However, she said Hussey is anxious to receive counselling and treatment at the federal level.

“He’s hoping he can beat this addiction for good,” she said.

Judge Lynn Spracklin went along with the lawyers’ recommendation of a 27-month sentence.

Hussey must also submit a DNA sample and is not allowed to have a weapon for 10 years after he’s released from jail.

“I wish you the best of luck,” Spracklin said to Hussey.

Hussey smiled at his father as he left the courtroom.

“See you, Dad,” he said. “Hopefully, I’ll talk to you soon.”

rgillingham@thetelegram.com