Number of spousal assaults ‘astonishing’

H.P. court docket
March 15, 2021
Judge C.K.W. Thietke

A young man from Atikameg will spend another few weeks in prison after pleading guilty to several charges including assault to his common law wife and another woman.
Devon Dyson Laboucan, 27, was handed a global sentence of 150 days on the charges when he appeared in High Prairie provincial court March 15.
“The number of spousal assaults in northern Alberta is astonishing, especially on Indigenous women,” Judge C.K.W. Thietke said during sentencing.
“It’s in our courts all the time.”
Judge Thietke agreed to the joint submission to sentencing by Crown prosecutor Kelly Payne and Laboucan’s lawyer, Harry Jong.
The global sentence was given on two counts of assault, failing to attend a trial, uttering threats to cause death, and failing to comply with an undertaking.
Laboucan was credited for 71 days already served as he appeared from the Peace River Correctional Centre.
Court heard Laboucan assaulted his common law wife on May 30, 2020, the Crown said, by hitting her on the head.
Next, High Prairie RCMP responded to a domestic violence call by a woman in Atikameg who reported that she was choked by her boyfriend on Dec. 7, 2019.
He pushed her onto the bed and punched her in the chest, said Payne.
“He said, ‘I’ll [f#$%] finish what I started”, the Crown alleged.
Laboucan was on a court order to have no contact with her when he was with her at her residence Dec. 20, 2019, the Crown submitted.
He was also sentenced to probation for 18 months for assault causing bodily harm and probation for another 12 months concurrent for unlawful confinement and assault with a weapon.
Police responded to a call in Atikameg on Sept. 23, 2020 when another woman was injured, the Crown said.
“He punched her in the face and had a broken nose,” Payne said.
“Her nasal bone was broken.”
Court heard Laboucan went to her residence and he was told to leave, “then sucker-punched her,” Payne said.
On another date, police responded to a 911 call.
“When they arrived at the home, they heard a female sobbing,” Payne said.
Exterior doors in the front and back of the house were barricaded and police used a ram to enter the home.
Payne told court Laboucan smashed her music box with a bar.
During sentencing, Judge Thietke said Laboucan’s record was concerning to him.
Laboucan could not recall the details of the incidents, said Jong.
“He says he doesn’t remember anything because he was intoxicated,” Jong said.
“He was high on alcohol and meth.”
Court heard Laboucan suffers from mental health issues and wants to take treatment.
“He says he is remorseful,” Jong said.
“He’s glad he’s on the his way to something better,” he added.
During probation, Laboucan is ordered to have no contact with the victims, and complete treatment and counseling for the addictions and health as ordered.

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Shusheila Yellowknee, 24, of High Prairie, was fined $100, plus a victim fine surcharge of $20, after pleading guilty to shoplifting under $5,000.
Court heard Yellowknee stole an unknown number of products valued at $37 from a liquor store on Feb. 22, 2020, Crown prosecutor Kelly Payne said.
The Crown did not state the name of the liquor store.
“She’s ashamed of what she did,” duty counsel Harry Jong told court.
“She was egged on by a couple of fellows in the car.”
Yellowknee admits she has a problem with alcohol, Jong noted.

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Gail Marie Gladu was fined $360 for permitting a suspended driver from driving a motor vehicle on a highway.

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Steven Bradley Giroux was fined $115 for being intoxicated in a public place.
The charge arose after he became drunk and got into an argument.

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