R v P 2001

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Between
Her Majesty the Queen, and P
[2001] O.J. No. 2320
Ontario Court of Justice, Toronto, Ontario
Ormston J.
Heard: May 24, 2001 • Judgment: May 24, 2001
(32 paras.)

Criminal law — Sentencing — Considerations on imposing sentence — Rehabilitation — Mental illness — Previous criminal offences (incl. repeat or dangerous offenders) — Remorse of accused — Time already served — Adequacy of penal institutions.

Sentencing hearing. P pleaded guilty. The Crown's prospective witness had mental health concerns and was in fragile health. P had mental difficulties and was taking steps to resolve them. He had served a month in detention in the Don Jail. P had prior convictions, including for assaulting a police officer.

HELD: P was sentenced to serve three more months with statutory remission, and one year probation. He was ordered to give consent to make his health records available to the probation workers, and required to complete the PARS program. P was credited with three months for the one month served in the Don jail. The court also considered as mitigating factors the remorse he had shown by pleading guilty, and the steps he was taking to deal with his illness. As well, the Court considered that P spared the Crown witness from testifying.

Counsel:
G. Gayle, for the Crown.
C. Fromstein, for the accused.
  1. ORMSTON J.:— I can do something for you, Mr. P, in the circumstances of this.  I take into account the fact that you did plead guilty.  And that is a demonstration of your remorse.  You want to put this behind you and get on with the rest of your life.  I take into account that because of your plea of guilt she doesn't have to come to court to testify.  And she has some mental health concerns as well and she is fragile, and that's a good thing for you.  So you spared her that, because it is always tough to come to court and testify about those.  So that is to your credit.
  2. And I take into account the fact of your illness and the steps that you are taking there.  On the other hand, you know, I have got a criminal record here that has several times of assault on it and the last one was assault police officer in 1999.
  3. THE ACCUSED:  One cigarette.
  4. THE COURT:  You've done well for a couple of years.
  5. THE ACCUSED:  A bunch of cigarettes.
  6. THE COURT:  The other thing that I am going to take into account is that you spent a month now in the Don Jail.  I am going to give you credit for three months.  And the reason we do that, of course, is as Ms. Fromstein has said, in the Don Jail now there are three and four people in cells that were designed for two.  Two people have to sleep on the floor.  There is no statutory remission of your sentence. There is no counselling available for you.  There is no education facilities.  The place is full of tuberculosis and hepatitis B, and it's like the middle ages.  We know that.  So that's why you are being given credit for three months as you stand before me.
  7. But in all of the circumstances, given your record, I still think that a further three months in jail is the appropriate sentence.  Now you will be given statutory remission on that.  And you know that you are not going to have do the full three months.  But you are still going to have to do some more time in relation to this.
  8. And then I'm going to put you on probation for a year.  You will keep the peace and be of good behaviour.  You will report to your probation officer as he or she directs. You'll reside or live at an address as provided for by your probation officer.  You'll come in and see Ms. Valesky, who is a mental health worker here, and she is going to set you up with an ACT Team.  And that stands for assertive community treatment team.  There will be a psychiatrist, there will be a couple of nurses, there will be a social worker, and they'll get involved with your life.  And they'll try to help you much the same as your friend, Ms. F, did.
  9. And for that period of time you'll sign a Form 14, which gives that team the necessary consents to speak to your psychiatrist or your medical doctors.  You'll take the medication on the counselling as they provide.
  10. And most importantly, you are to have no contact whatsoever with Nadine.  Do you understand?  You can't see her, or phone her, or write to her, or go by her place.  If you see her walking down the street you have to walk on the other side.  Turn around.  You simply can't acknowledge her. She is terrified of you now.
  11. THE ACCUSED:  I'm terrified of her.
  12. THE COURT:  Well you may think, you know, that there are still some feelings there, but she doesn't want to see you.  And if you do you'll be in breach of your probation.
    All right.  So those will be the terms of your probation. You'll do your time and come out on probation.
  13. THE ACCUSED:  How much time will I have to serve in jail?
  14. THE COURT:  I think approximately six or eight weeks, maybe, out of the three months.  Good luck.
  15. MS. FROMSTEIN:  Thank you very much.
  16. MR. GAYLE:  If I may respectfully request before we finish with this matter, sir, that Mr. P be required to do the PARS program.  He has shown, as you have noted, sir, a lack of insight into his behaviour.  And I believe, in my respectful submission, that that would be of some assistance.
  17. THE COURT:  On a term of probation?
  18. MR. GAYLE:  Yes.  Partners of his in the future.
  19. THE COURT:  All right.  The Court will recommend -- what does it stand for?
  20. MR. GAYLE:  Partner assistance ...
  21. THE COURT:  Partners what?
  22. MR. GAYLE:  Partner assisted -- assault.  I'm not quite sure.
  23. MS. FROMSTEIN:  I'm going to ask Your Honour -- I'm not opposing that, but perhaps it can be in the discretion of the probation officer.  If he feels it is appropriate for Mr. P.
  24. THE COURT:  All right.  PARS program at the discretion of the probation officer.
  25. MS. FROMSTEIN:  Thank you.
  26. MR. GAYLE:  Thank you.
  27. THE COURT:  All right.  Good luck, sir.
  28. THE LIAISON OFFICER:  Is that concurrent?
  29. MR. GAYLE:  Is this going to be concurrent on both charges?
  30. THE COURT:  Concurrent on all counts.
  31. MR. GAYLE:  Thank you.
  32. THE COURT:  Thank you.  Good luck, sir.
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