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House arrest for hockey stick assault
Man given conditional sentence for attacking teen

Daniel Campbell
Northern News Services
Published Wednesday, July 17, 2013

A 24-year-old man has been sentenced in the assault of an aboriginal teenager that took place in the Videoland parking lot in May 2011.

Julian Walsh struck a 19-year-old man in the head with the heel of a goalie stick, causing a haematoma and hemorrhaging on the left side of the teen's brain. The victim was medevaced to Edmonton and suffered chronic headaches afterwards, according the victim statement.

The assault occurred after Walsh and two friends left a party at Vee Lake to go to McDonald's. One of Walsh's friends had a confrontation with a teen outside the restaurant. Following the confrontation, Walsh and his friends were approached by six to eight youth. Walsh testified he grabbed a goalie stick from the vehicle his friends were in and swung at the victim in self-defence.

Walsh was convicted on April 18 of assault with a weapon by Judge Garth Malakoe. Malakoe sentenced Walsh to 12 months house arrest on Tuesday.

"If it was (aboriginal) they'd lock him up," said a member of the victim's party, who didn't give his name, as he walked out of the courthouse.

"It's just the court protecting the white boy again," he continued.

Malakoe said an assault as serious as this requires imprisonment in order to act as a deterrent to others, but he was satisfied a conditional sentence would be sufficient. He said Walsh expressed remorse for his actions and would be a good candidate for rehabilitation.

He also said Walsh's assault was not premeditated and he didn't attack the victim further after knocking him down.

The Crown was seeking a six to 12 month jail sentence plus one-year probation.

Walsh was ordered to complete 180 hours of community service and not to leave his house except under special circumstances, such as for work and medical appointments. His sentence will be transferred to Edmonton where Walsh now resides.

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