A Prince George man was sentenced Wednesday in B.C. Supreme Court to two years of jail for sexual assault.
Trent Hutchinson, 27, was convicted in January 2023 as the result of an incident at his Prince George residence on December 11, 2021.
The jail sentence will be served as a conditional sentence in the community, with Hutchinson under house arrest. Three years of probation will follow, in addition to an order to pay $7,000 in restitution to the victim. He will also be listed as a registered sex offender for the next 20 years.
Justice Ronald Tindale presided over the sentencing and noted that Hutchinson has no previous criminal history and is employed as a tradesperson at the Prince George Canfor mill.
Hutchinson's employment makes it reasonable to pay the restitution sum, explained Tindale, with the funds to be used by the victim for counselling and medical care.
Tindale said the victim suffered significant psychological harm, as Hutchinson committed a serious crime that deeply violated the trust of the victim.
Hutchinson was intoxicated at the time of the assault. He and the victim had met on a dating app in October 2021, and were briefly in a romantic relationship, but not at the time of the December assault.
The victim was celebrating her birthday and had invited Hutchinson to watch movies together. Hutchinson was "extremely intoxicated" and had drank approximately 18 ounces of bourbon, explained Justice Tindale regarding the assault's context. The victim was not intoxicated and drank only one or two ounces of rum.
Hutchinson then took the victim to his bedroom and proceeded to remove her clothes and have sex with her, court heard, with the victim crying and shaking throughout the ordeal.
Hutchinson expressed remorse to the victim a few days after the assault, with the victim finding an apology note at Hutchinson’s residence.
“In my view, his judgment was significantly impaired, and any belief that he had that the complainant consented to sexual activity arose from his self-induced intoxication,” said Justice Tindale.
Tindale further described Hutchinson’s actions as reckless towards the victim, as he ignored the fact she was crying and shaking.
The victim now suffers from anxiety and depression, court heard, relying on daily prescription medications to manage panic attacks. A impact statement from the victim was read aloud in court by Justice Tindale.
“Fight, flight, and freeze are natural instincts, and freezing is all I seem to be able to do - I’m terrified on the inside of something that feels like a ghost, all I want to do is forget everything, but it’s impossible to forget something when it brings your entire life to a freezing halt,” wrote the victim.