Man pleads guilty to assaulting partner

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A Brantford man, sentenced last December to eight years in prison for sexually assaulting his young stepdaughter, has pleaded guilty to assaulting the girl’s mother.

The man pleaded guilty in Ontario Court to seven offences from 2009 and 2010: three counts of assault, two counts of mischief under $5,000, theft under $5,000 and threatening death or bodily harm.

Assistant Crown attorney Derek Zuraw told court the man and his victim were partners for almost seven years, having two children together and parenting a daughter from the woman’s previous relationship.

Zuraw said the woman delayed reporting the man’s abuse out of fear.

Court heard that the man punched her in the face and shoved her into a mirror, which broke and cut her hand. He sat on her stomach when she was pregnant and punched her head until she lost consciousness. When she refused to give him $20, the man choked her from behind until she lost consciousness and then took the money.

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Once, when the woman threatened to call police, the man kicked in a door, straddled her and said he would kill her, choking her unconscious. Another time, he left her with two black eyes and what she suspected was a broken nose, and prevented her from leaving to get medical attention.

“I have a flavour for what’s transpired,” said Justice Gethin Edward.

Zuraw said some of the evidence against the man had been revealed during his trial for the offences against his stepdaughter. The Crown could have faced a problem proving its case if the man had not pleaded guilty, said Zuraw.

The Crown and defence agreed on a two-year sentence that recognized that the man pleaded guilty,  still has “significant time to serve” in prison and that his victim just “wants to put this behind her.” The new sentence will be served at the same time as the man’s prison sentence.

“I’m a changed person,” the man told Edward.

He said he has “grown up a lot” during the past two years spent at the Maplehurst Correctional Complex in Milton, Ont.

I’m optimistic about getting out and working with my family.”

Edward said the concurrent sentence will allow the man to clean up his outstanding offences.

Despite his pleas of innocence in the case involving his stepdaughter, the man was found guilty by a Superior Court judge of sexual assault, touching for a sexual purpose and uttering threats.

Neither the child nor the mother gave victim-impact statements in that court case, saying the emotional toll would be too great for them. But the judge said he didn’t need those statements to pronounce the man’s actions as “devastating, traumatic and profound.”

The Superior Court judge was told the man has a supportive new partner who doesn’t believe he could sexually abuse anyone.

Zuraw said the man has appealed his eight-year sentence which, due to time already served, left him with four years and 239 days to serve.

“He has a young lady waiting for him,” he said.

The man also was convicted in 2008 of domestic assault causing bodily harm and, in 2015, of forcible confinement, sexual assault and overcoming resistance by attempting to choke a 16-year-old.

SGamble@postmedia.com

@EXPSGamble

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