Sentencing: sexual assault on a minor

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François Carrier
Local Journalism Initiative

CAMPBELL’S BAY – On January 9 at the Campbell’s Bay courthouse, a Pontiac man was sentenced to 78 months (6 1/2 years) in prison for sexually assaulting a minor. To protect the victim, a publication ban was issued and the identity of the convicted man hasn’t been revealed.

Simon Pelletier, Criminal and Penal Prosecution Prosecutor for the Director of Criminal and Penal Prosecutions (DCPC), elaborated on the sentence and publication ban.

“In almost all cases involving a minor who is the victim of a sexual crime, their identity will be protected by the courts. In some cases when there’s some connection between the victim and the accused, the name of the accused can’t be reported either. That’s the case here. I can’t go into detail on the relationship, however. If we were to report the name of the accused, it would have the almost inevitable effect of identifying the victim,” he said.

Pelletier said the sentence was a mutual agreement between the Crown and the defence. “It’s common. In the majority of cases, we look at the crime’s details and suggest a fitting sentence. In cases involving sexual crimes against children, the sentences are always very severe. Since the Supreme Court’s Friesen decision, the sentencing scale for sexual crimes against children has been increased. Why? The Supreme Court has sent a message that sexual crimes against children are unacceptable and if a person commits this offence, they should go to jail and receive a sentence that hurts,” he told the Journal.

Crime Victim Assistance Centres (CAVACs) provide front-line services to victims, their loved ones, and even witnesses. Janie Landry of the Pontiac CAVAC said help is available whether or not the perpetrator is identified, arrested, prosecuted or convicted. More details about CAVAC are available at https://chipfm.com/chip-1019-discute-avec-janie-landry-du-cavac-concernant-les-services-offerts-aux-victimes-dactes-criminels.