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Year in jail for sex assault

Paul Bickford
Northern News Services
Published Monday, April 4, 2011

THEBACHA/FORT SMITH - A Fort Smith man has been sentenced to a year in jail for a sexual assault on a teenage girl.

Malcolm Magloire Beaver, 41, was sentenced in Fort Smith territorial court on March 28.

He had earlier pleaded guilty to the offence, which took place on Aug. 20 of last year.

According to an agreed statement of facts, the 16-year-old victim had been drinking on the night before the assault at Beaver's house with a group of her friends and she passed out in his bed.

About 2 p.m. the next day, she awoke to find Beaver, who was intoxicated at the time, had pulled down her pants and underwear and sexually assaulted her.

As she told him to stop, he tried to remove her shirt, while saying, "Let me be. Let me be."

The Crown said the victim was too scared to immediately go to police and did not report the assault until January of this year.

There is a court-imposed publication ban on information that could lead to the identity of the victim.

Crown prosecutor Danielle Vaillancourt said it was a very serious assault.

"He took advantage of a young vulnerable victim who was sleeping," Vaillancourt said.

Defence lawyer Balji Rattan agreed it was a serious offence, although she noted Beaver was significantly drunk at the time.

"Alcohol has been a consistent problem in Mr. Beaver's life since he was a child," his lawyer said.

She said Beaver would never have contemplated such an assault while sober.

Rattan added Beaver is beside himself with remorse about the incident.

Beaver told the court he is truly sorry for the assault and agreed alcohol is the cause of the problems in his life.

"I lost my sense of direction," he said.

In passing sentence, Judge Christine Gagnon pointed to a number of aggravating factors in the assault, including the age of the victim, the fact she was passed out and that Beaver allowed underage persons to drink in his house.

Gagnon recognized alcohol played a role in the assault.

"It's important that the court tells you that the cycle has to end," she told Beaver.

The victim suffered from confusion, low self-esteem, blaming herself and increased drinking after the assault, according to a victim impact statement, the judge said.

"Actually, it's not her fault," the judge said. "The adult is the one who should know better."

In unrelated offences, Beaver was sentenced to 30 days for uttering threats, 45 days for theft of a motor vehicle and 45 days for breach of probation. He was also fined $1,000 for impaired driving.

In addition, he is to be placed on two years of probation upon his release from jail.

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