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West coast man sentenced to 15 months in jail for steady stream of offences earlier this year

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Judge said the 26-year-old's background — which included his being a victim of sexual abuse — must be considered, but that the public also must be protected


The impact of the sexual abuse a west coast man suffered as a child led to an adult life filled with addiction, depression and crime.

On Wednesday in Corner Brook, that man was sentenced to 15 months in jail for his latest offences, a dozen committed between January and June of this year. Some of his crimes involved his former partner and his mother.

In his written decision, Judge Wayne Gorman only identifies the 26-year-old man by his initials.

Gorman said the man was under the influence of alcohol when he committed the crimes, many of which occurred in the early morning hours, and all were committed in the small community in which the man and his victims reside.

The offences started on Jan. 26 when the man saw his former partner driving with her new partner. He walked in front of the vehicle, which stopped, and approached the driver’s side. The driver lowered the window and the man threw an unopened bottle of beer through the window striking the driver’s hand and his former partner’s leg. He then struck the hood of the vehicle with his fists and kicked it.

When the vehicle was backing away, the man threw another bottle of beer at it. The cost to repair the vehicle was $1,794.

The man was arrested for damage to property and two counts of assault before being released on an undertaking.

On March 28, the man assaulted his mother by grabbing the collar of her shirt and dragging her across an apartment building parking lot. He was charged with assault and again released on an undertaking that prohibited him from communicating with his mother or being at her residence.

On June 2, a woman called the police saying the man and his brother were attempting to enter her residence. The brother struck the front door with a piece of two-by-four and the man used it to smash the windshield of her vehicle, causing $900 in damage.

The man also pushed a friend of the woman who attempted to intervene. Later, at his mother’s residence, he threatened to kill another person. And earlier he and his brother broke into a convenience store. He waited outside while his brother went in and stole cigarettes and beer worth $572.

“His background must be considered, but the public must be protected from the types of offences committed by (him).”

He was charged with break and entry, uttering a threat, assault, damage to property and breach of an undertaking, and released.

On June 17, the man’s sister contacted police when he went to his mother’s and began kicking the front door. He threatened to “bash in” his sister’s face and to kill her.

He was again arrested and while in a cell at the police detachment, put something in the toilet causing it to overflow.

He was charged with breach of an undertaking, uttering a threat and damage to property. He has been in custody since then.

A pre-sentence report completed for the court indicates the man feels remorse for his actions and that he believes being arrested and placed in remand has saved his life. The man said he regretted his criminal behaviour and plans to stay out of trouble and away from substances in the future.

In addition to his substance abuse, the man also suffers from a mental illness. He also has a lengthy criminal record.

In deciding on the man’s sentence, Gorman said he considered the impact the sexual abuse had on the man in his ability to assess his level of moral responsibility for the offences he committed.

“His background must be considered, but the public must be protected from the types of offences committed by (him).”

Gorman said consideration of the totality of the circumstances and the balancing of the various goals of sentencing led him to conclude the 15-month sentence was appropriate. That will be reduced by 153 days for time spent in pre-sentence custody.

Upon completion of this sentence, the man will be placed on probation for two years, and will be subject to a weapons and ammunition prohibition for 10 years and to a DNA order.

He was also ordered to pay a total of $4,905.82 in restitution to his victims and $1,627.48 to the convenience store’s insurance company.


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