A Yellowknife man who sent another man to an Edmonton hospital with serious injuries following an assault at a campground last summer was given a seven month sentence Wednesday.
Brandon Baxandall, 25, was handed the sentence by Chief judge Christine Gagnon in NWT territorial court after being convicted on one count of assault causing bodily harm.
During a day trip to Fred Henne Territorial Park on July 12, 2017, Baxandall became involved in an altercation with a man and a woman. A physical confrontation ensued, with Baxandall knocking the man unconscious.
The victim sustained extensive facial swelling and suffered a fractured jaw. He was medevaced to Edmonton where he underwent reconstructive surgery and had metal plates inserted under his skin.
Baxandall was initially charged with assaulting both individuals at the Yellowknife campground, but after pleading not guilty and going to trial, he was only convicted of one charge – assault causing bodily harm against the man he knocked unconscious.
During a facts and sentencing hearing Monday, the court heard Baxandall did not instigate the fight and that he still maintains he acted in self-defence.
In handing down her decision, Gagnon underscored the impact the assault had on the victim as well as guests camping at Fred Henne Territorial Park.
Judging by the serious injuries sustained by the victim, Gagnon inferred Baxandall used a “great amount of force,” during the assault.
Gagnon highlighted the fact that members of the victim’s family, who were at the park, thought he was dead after seeing him lying unconscious. She also noted the assault’s financial impact, as the victim missed work while receiving treatment outside the territory.
In what she called a “secondary impact,” Gagnon said the assault, which occurred in an area frequented by families, disrupted other guests who were camping at the park.
On Wednesday, Baxandall was also sentenced for two lesser convictions.
In May of last year, he was caught driving with a disqualified licence and two months later, as a result of the campground assault, earned another charge for breaking his curfew. He pleaded guilty to both charges and was handed a two year driving ban plus one day in jail for driving while disqualified and another day in jail for breaching conditions.
Baxandall has spent 102 days in custody since being convicted, meaning he’ll only spend 57 more days behind bars.