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'Go to Iraq,' judge tells cop kicker

Dorothy Westerman
Northern News Services

Yellowknife (Mar 17/06) - A territorial court judge told a Yellowknife man he can go to Iraq if he wants to continue a drunken lifestyle that culminated with an assault on an RCMP officer with his steel-toed boots.

Judge Brian Bruser sentenced Douglas MacLean, 20, to serve 30 days in jail to be served on weekends after pleading guilty to kicking a police officer while being arrested outside a Shell convenience store, Jan. 1.

"You are extremely lucky you live in Canada with a strong democracy and a rule of law - not fists and steel-toed boots," Bruser said in court on Tuesday.

"If you want to live this way, you can go to Iraq."

The incident occurred after Yellowknife RCMP responded to a call about an intoxicated man swearing outside the convenience store.

MacLean threw an unlit cigar at the officer when he approached. The officer then tried to handcuff the man, but a struggle ensued and both fell to the ground.

The man started swinging at the officer, and subsequently kicked him with steel-toed boots as he was being escorted into a police vehicle. The assault caused abrasions and bleeding on the officer's forehead.

The officer finally pepper sprayed MacLean to get him into the vehicle.

Judge Bruser said imprisonment was necessary to reflect the gravity of the offence. "You got the year off to a very ugly start. The officer was trying to deal with a fairly minor situation when you escalated it," Bruser said.

MacLean was ordered to report to the North Slave correctional centre, sober, starting this weekend from 9 a.m. every Saturday until 9 p.m. on Sundays, until his sentence has been served.