'I have caused much evil' father in abuse case tells Ottawa court
Joanne Schnurr, CTV Ottawa
Published Thursday, March 16, 2017 5:13PM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, March 16, 2017 6:51PM EDT
An Ottawa father apologized to his son today for having been a monster and begged his son's forgiveness. The 45-year-old former RCMP officer was then led away in shackles to be sentenced next month.
The man admitted he had caused much evil. For the Crown, that's an understatement. They are seeking the harshest of penalties for the extreme abuse against the little boy, while his lawyer says to keep in mind this man's mental state.
Right near the end of this 4 year trial, the father of 3 begged forgiveness from his oldest son who he had shackled, starved and sexually abused in the basement of their family home.
“Stating I wish I had died in a car bomb would be as close as I can get to my remorse,” he told court, “I have caused much evil and only God knows how much I regret my horrible crimes."
Through tears, the father then said he would lay down his life for his son in a second if it would erase all the sad and traumatizing moments his son has endured.
And court heard there were many moments. For six months, he was chained in the basement, naked much of the time, his genitals burned with a BBQ lighter. He weighed 50 pounds when he managed to escape in February of 2013. His stepmother was sentenced to 3 years in prison. The man’s lawyer, Bob Carew, told court that 5 to 7 years is an appropriate sentence for this man, with time and a half for the 14 months he had already served in prison, given the evidence from two psychiatrists about his PTSD, depression and anxiety.
“You’re not sentencing a normal person" Carew told Justice Robert Maranger, "you're sentencing someone with mental health issues."
He added that this man was heavily invested in his son but that this investment went to the extreme “where we are now, but he wasn’t a monster preying on children,” Carew said.
But Crown Prosecutor Marie Dufort said the only reason this boy is alive was because he managed to escape.
The Crown says most telling are the videos the father recorded of his son, naked shackled and shivering in the basement, pleading with his father, “While he is calm and methodical in his interrogation-style torture,” Dufort said.
They are seeking consecutive sentencing for the charges of aggravated assault, sexual assault, forcible confinement and failing to provide the necessities of life, and seeking 23 years in prison.
Ultimately, this man is hoping to reconnect with his wife and two sons. To his oldest, he said hoped the boy will, “find it in your heart to forgive the father whom you still love; your father who will always love you.”
Justice Maranger now has a few weeks to go over years of evidence from this trial and will deliver his sentence on April 12th.