A man who attacked a woman with a box-cutter at Dollarama in Bay Roberts two years ago told police he had been trying to disfigure her, since she cared so much about her appearance.
Jason Alexander King, 47, had originally been charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault, assault and two breaches of court orders in relation to the attack. Monday morning he pleaded guilty in Newfoundland and Labrador Supreme Court in St. John’s to the aggravated assault charge, assault and one of the court order breaches. The attempted murder charge was withdrawn.
King had been convicted of assaulting the woman and damaging her property and had been given a three-year probation order a year before the more serious charges, with conditions that he have no contact with her.
He and the woman decided to remain in contact despite the order, and were at his home together the night before the attack at Dollarama, according to an agreed statement of facts presented to the court. The pair argued and the argument continued in the porch when the woman indicated she wanted to leave. King took her phone, which fell on the floor and broke.
Jason Alexander King, 47, had originally been charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault, assault and two breaches of court orders
King drove the woman home and offered to pay $800 for a new phone if the woman agreed not to call police. Later that evening, the woman called King and asked if he would replace the phone. He agreed and she said she wouldn’t call police. King eventually called her back and said he wouldn’t be paying for the phone after all and never wanted to hear from her again.
The next morning, the woman visited King at work at the Bay Roberts Dollarama, where he was stocking shelves. She asked him again if he was going to pay for her phone, and, after he said no, told him “Very good, then,” and turned to walk away. It was at this point King threw the woman to the floor and began slashing at her face with a box-cutter. A customer tackled him, allowing others to help the woman.
The woman was admitted to hospital with a laceration of almost four inches on one cheek, and another one, more than seven inches long, on the other. She also had significant lacerations to her finger and wrist. The woman still suffers mobility issues in her hand and arm due to the injuries, and has scars from some of them.
In a video statement to RCMP officers, King said he slashed the woman’s face because he wanted to disfigure her. She put a lot of value in her appearance, he said.
King has been in custody ever since. He told the court many times he wanted to represent himself in legal proceedings, despite advice from the judge to get a lawyer. “It’s an ego thing,” he said.
In September he tried to plead guilty to all the charges but his pleas were rejected by Justice Donald Burrage, since King had previously told the court he hadn’t intended to kill the woman.
“I cannot accept a guilty plea to attempted murder from a man who stood where you’re standing and told me he didn’t intend to kill her,” Burrage said, explaining he needed to be satisfied there was an intention to kill in order to convict a person of attempted murder.
King replied that he just wanted to “get it over with.”
King will be sentenced next month.