Warning: This story contains graphic content.
A 17-year-old Saanich youth who broke into a disabled man’s apartment and sexually assaulted his nurse will spend six months under house arrest followed by two years of probation on an intensive support supervision order.
At the youth’s sentencing hearing on Thursday, Victoria provincial court Judge Evan Blake called the offence alarming, highly aggravated and “outrageous for this community.”
“It was a prolonged and terrifying experience for both victims,” Blake said.
The teen, who cannot be named under the Youth Criminal Justice Act, was arrested Aug. 30 after Saanich police responded to an interrupted 911 call at 3:15 a.m.
He was released on bail in September after his parents installed an alarm system on the outside doors and windows of their home. In October, he pleaded guilty to sexual assault and break and enter.
The identity of his two victims is also protected by a court order.
At 1:45 a.m. on Aug. 30, the youth’s father woke up and discovered his son was not at home, prosecutor Barbara Penty told the court. He went looking for him and at 2:30 a.m., found him walking near their home.
Back home, they got into an argument, Penty said. The father told his son to go to bed. Instead, he sneaked out of the house.
About 3 a.m., the youth was walking by an apartment on Borden Street and saw an open door. He entered the disabled man’s apartment intending to steal something. The man called out to his night nurse that someone was in the bedroom.
The young woman woke up and saw the youth walking toward her. He started rubbing her hair and her face, Penty said. She told him to leave, but he pressed her down on the bed with his body, pulling at her pants. She kicked at him and ran into the kitchen.
She tried to dial 911, but the youth took the phone from her and grabbed at her breasts. His penis was out and he tried to rub it against her stomach. He spat on her neck and shoulders, then licked it off her, Penty said.
He pinned the girl on the floor, saying: “Stop crying. Stop yelling. I’m not a bad person. I’ve had lots of bad things done to me. And I don’t want to hurt an innocent person,” Penty said.
The young woman bit him on the shoulder and briefly got away. She dialled 911 again, but the youth grabbed the phone. She got the phone a third time. After dialling 911, she hit the send button and flung the phone across the room.
At this point, the disabled man called out to her, saying he needed help. The youth went into the bedroom and asked if he could help.
“It was disturbing because the youth appeared to be very calm and genuinely concerned about the victim,” Penty said.
When they heard police sirens, the young woman pushed the youth out the door, saying, “You’ve got to get out of here.”
Penty estimated the struggle lasted 15 to 20 minutes.
Court-ordered psychiatric and pre-sentence reports show the youth was diagnosed in Grade 3 with autism spectrum disorder and attention deficit disorder. The reports say jail would not be appropriate for the teen, because he would likely be victimized in custody.
Defence lawyer Dale Marshall said the offence was inexplicable, bizarre and completely out of character. The youth has no criminal record and had done well at school but starting using marijuana, drinking and experimenting with other drugs in Grade 10.
On the night of the offence, the youth drank five large cans of extra strong beer, smoked pot and ingested cough syrup, Marshall said.
Blake imposed a six-month deferred custody and supervision order on the youth, which means he will essentially be under house arrest. That will be followed by a 24-month intensive support supervision order, which involves closer supervision and more support than a probation order, to help him change his behaviour.
The youth can attend school and must take counselling and attend assessments and programs as directed by his youth worker. He shall attend a restorative justice conference with the victims as directed by his youth worker. He is not to drink, take drugs or possess or access pornography.
Blake designated the sexual offence a serious violent offence and ordered the youth to give a sample of his DNA.
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