A man who avoided trial by pleading guilty to nearly choking out a minor with a headlock will serve a 30-day jail sentence on weekends.
In Inuvik Territorial Court Feb. 18, the man, who the Inuvik Drum has chosen not to name to protect the identity of the victim, pleaded guilty to one count of assault. Chief Judge Robert Gorin sentenced him to 30 days behind bars, but allowed him to serve his sentence intermittently. The man will also be on probation for 12 months following his sentence.
“Your honour, this has been going on for years,” said the man in his defence. “I just want it done.”
Crown prosecutor Annie Piche told court a minor was visiting the man on Aug. 20 while he was drinking. At one point during the visit, the man got up to get himself a beer. When he returned to the room, he grabbed the minor by the head and started pushing it towards his knees.
When she tried to get away, the man put her in a headlock until she became dizzy, then the man let go. The girl then left. Following the incident, she reported having a slight pain in her neck.
“He was in a position of trust,” said Piche. “He was drunk at the time, but that is not an excuse. She said stop and he continued.”
Piche added the man had a prior criminal record, with five convictions from three occasions for uttering threats.
Defence lawyer Leslie Moore said the man had quit drinking since the incident.
“What you have done is completely unacceptable,” said Gorin in his judgment. “You have saved the victim the trauma of testifying, but the sentence is quite lenient. The choking is quite concerning, you could have received a far bigger sentence.”