Millroy: Crown Attorney Going Easy on Plea Bargains

I’m not known as a guy who is in favour of hanging them high and hanging them often when it comes to those committing criminal offences.

But there are times when I see our Crown Attorney’s office as going way to easy in accepting plea bargains.

One, of course, was in the case of Wesley Hallam, where Sean Mearow, Ronald Mitchell and Dylan Jocko killed him and then dismembered his body.

Originally charged with first-degree murder, our Crown participated in a plea deal that saw the charges reduced to manslaughter, of which the three were more than happy to plead guilty since they would be free and clear once they had served their time.

There would be no parole restrictions, as would have been the case if the charge had been reduced to second-degree murder.

Another such instance just occurred, two men, William Ross and Glen Pelchat, having their first-degree-murder charge lowered to manslaughter in a plea bargain.

Elmer Tangie, 53, seemingly ended up being initially assaulted by William Ross because he went for coffee without Ross.

As Brian Kelly told it in The Sault Star, Ross confronted Tangie about it later.
“Ross punched Tangie several times. Tangie fell to the floor. Ross used an edged weapon to cut Tangie’s face, including a 15-centimetre cut along his right cheek. Tangie was helpless and bleeding on the floor, said assistant Crown attorney Karen Pritchard.

“When Glen Pelchat exited a bathroom, Tangie made some gurgling sounds. Ross told Pelchat to ‘shut him up.’ Pelchat kicked Tangie in the head. Tangie was bound at his hands and feet, gagged, wrapped in a sheet, blanket and comforter and left on the floor. Ross showered and left the unit. Pelchat cleaned up the floor and walls around Tangie and also exited the apartment.”

An autopsy found six sharp force injuries, including to Tangie’s right cheek, right face and base of his nasal septum. Eleven blunt force injuries were identified including to Tangie’s left forehead, below his right eye and lips.

Tangie’s injuries alone would not have caused his death but the actions by Ross and Pelchat contributed to it, said Pritchard..

I have trouble accepting in such cases that the initial charge of first-degree murder can somehow be downgraded all the way to manslaughter. Reading what occurred, I believe most law and order types will agree.

I can appreciate that Crown attorneys wants to escape going to trial but if justice is to be truly served they should have to pay more attention to the severity of the case.

Tangie was beaten and bound at his hands and feet and wrapped in bedding before his two assailants left the building.

They may not have been directly responsible for his death but they contributed to it. The charge should not have gone below second-degree murder.

WHEN I HEARD RECENTLY of the passing of Harvey Sims at the age of 80, memories came flooding back of that hectic time in the mid-90s when then Mayor Joe Fratesi forced the retirement of Chief Administrative Officer Alan Jackson in an effort to get Jackson’s job for himself.

Sims and Alison Patterson applied for a finding that Fratesi had violated the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act in eventually getting the job, as he was still mayor at the time, winning on two occasions, one before Justice Michael Meehan and another before Justice John Poupore.

Meehan found Fratesi had contradicted the Conflict Act on three occasions and this had continued after similar findings by Poupore.

But when it came to a penalty, the justices found their hands were tied. Fratesi was banned from seeking the mayor’s job for four years, a slap on the wrist as it was a job he no longer wanted anyway.
However, the action by Sims and Patterson was appreciated by a large portion of the community in that it did hold Fratesi to account.

Fratesi, of course, wasn’t happy as he not only lost the case but had to pay 100 percent of the court costs of Sims and Patterson. He launched a $575,000 lawsuit against Sims and Patterson as a result of information contained in a factum that had been prepared in connection with the application.
He also lost that one.

Justice R.I.P. Gravely wrote in his decision: “For public policy reasons statements made in the course of and for the purpose of judicial proceedings are the subject of absolute privilege. The privilege confers an immunity against actions in defamation.”

Malcolm McLeod, lawyer for Sims and Patterson, also noting privilege, suggested the aim of the suit was solely to punish the two people who dared to stand up against the former mayor.
Sims wasn’t finished. He wrote a book on the whole affair titled sarcastically “The Best Man For The Job.”
His obituary in The Ottawa Citizen read in part:
If you’re reading this, I am no more, as John Cleese famously said about his dead parrot.

But while I was still around, I was one of the luckiest men in the world:
I was lucky in my choice of family. Evelyn and Gar Sims were loving and generous parents, and my grandparents, aunts, and uncles were all kind and supportive.

I was lucky in my choice of country in which to be born and raised; Canada gave me more than I could ever have hoped to repay.

I never went hungry, thirsty from time to time, maybe, but never hungry.
I never had to go to war, as my father and uncles had to do.
I had a variety of fascinating jobs and worked with many fine colleagues.
And I almost always enjoyed pretty good health.

He said with his second marriage, to Janet Sabourin, his luck truly soared and with three great kids to boot — Christopher, Tina, and Jonathan — he couldn’t have asked for more.
“I was rich beyond belief.”

As was the Sault because of his presence.

One thought on “Millroy: Crown Attorney Going Easy on Plea Bargains

  1. It’s no wonder that the current system under corrupt drama teacher Trudeau isn’t working, even close to the way it should, yet the little corrupt pansy still remains in office.

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